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Monday, October 10th, 2011 at 12:58 am  |  35 responses

Team Wade Defeats Team LeBron 141-140 at South Florida All-Star Classic

by Adam Figman | @afigman

It featured two rosters filled with NBA players, bleachers overflowing with screaming fans, close to an hour of intense basketball action, an overtime session and a down-to-the-wire finish, yet Saturday night’s South Florida All-Star Classic at Florida International University’s US Century Bank Arena bared only few similarities to your average NBA tilt. For one, the squads were entitled Team LeBron and Team Wade, each after its respective superstar captain. For two, the proceeds raised from ticket sales went to Mary’s Court Foundation, a charity founded by current FIU Head Coach Isiah Thomas and his wife that supports public education in Chicago. For three, comedian Kevin Hart coached Team Wade, even attempting his best Bobby Knight impression by launching a folding chair onto the court after a blown call.

Oh, and no NBA games outside of the actual All-Star Game ever includes this many All-Stars. Not a one.

Team Wade, led by the Heat guard alongside Carmelo Anthony, Chris Paul and Amar’e Stoudemire, squeaked out the overtime victory minutes after Anthony drilled a deep three to tie things up with two seconds remaining in regulation. LeBron James, clad in the Nike LeBron 9 “Cannons” and leading a group that included Kevin Durant, Chris Bosh and Rajon Rondo, planted his feet and sank a halfcourt set shot as the OT buzzer sounded, and although the in-arena commentator claimed that his trey should have counted for four (and if any shot ever should’ve, it was this one), it did not, and Team LeBron fell by a single point, 141-140.

For three quarters the game wasn’t unlike most of this summer’s other lighthearted charity games, filled with high-flying dunks, absurdly athletic alley-oops and spontaneous, deep three-pointers. Though just about everyone got in on the fun at some point or another, highlight leaders included John Wall (for Team Wade), Stoudemire, Durant and James. NBAers Russell Westbrook, Rudy Gay, Mario Chalmers, Dorell Wright, Caron Butler, Jamal Crawford, Jonny Flynn and Damon Jones—the only participant without an NBA affiliation—all saw solid time on the court.

But in the fourth, the competition became heated, with both sides unexpectedly clamping down on D and hustling for loose balls. During one crucial play, a chant of “DE-FENSE” broke out, which must have been a charity game first. When Anthony sank the three that forced overtime, he yelled “I do this!” while excitedly hopping down the floor—as he’s done in the past—his unrestrained excitement indicating the kind of natural, hoops-inspired passion generally reserved for moments that affect standings or playoff positioning.

The “oohs” and “ahhs” rained down from the standing-room-only crowd of 4,000-plus for the event’s entirety, and while there was no telling if fans would get the chance to see any of their heroes wearing the uniforms they get paid to play in during the coming months, for this night concerns about lockouts and BRIs and labor negotiations were shoved aside in favor of a legitimate, real-life athletic contest. Those Basketball Never Stops shirts tell no lies.

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  • Jay Cutler

    Can’t wait to see video

  • Double J

    Wow the big names are really putting out, hopefully we can get a big one over here in seattle

  • http://slamonline.com Brad Long

    Chris Bosh is mad that he didn’t have his own team.

  • http://Www.fiba.com Darksaber

    Yesss, Tuff Juice is back playing fullcourt-ball.

  • ChipS

    Stoudemire has some underrated kicks

  • Jerry

    Hey guys is Stephen Jackson the only nba player to also play in the nfl?

  • http://sajkflf.com Jukai

    Everything I have read points to a strong indication that I should be crying for missing this.

  • Mike Jones

    That is what Melo does,big plays in the Clutch and it is great that he knows it and letting people know.

  • http://www.fiba.com Darksaber

    Juk’s: there’s a replay in this link, got it from Mubwar in the Paul Pierce Top 50 post.
    http://miami.cbslocal.com/game-live-broadcast/?utm_source=home&utm_medium=dl&utm_campaign=all-star-classic-on-cbs4-online

  • http://www.fiba.com Darksaber

    Watched the replay and it was the expected low D, sloppy passing game, but in the 4th they pulled up their shorts and went hard.
    Bron taking a two-foot plant jumper from halfcourt at the buzzer and making it, jeeezus.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Max

    Lebron forces ot? He getting there lol

  • jufu

    i wonder if everyone forgets lebron’s clutch performances with the cavs on the wizards, pistons, etc. three or four years ago…

  • http://basket-infos.fr basket infos

    Here is a little video before the game (a little slam dunk contest) : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zR4HqFF8Ff8

  • http://www.slamonline.com UNFROZEN CAVEMAN LAWYER

    ‘I DO THIS!’

  • stayweird38

    Melooooooooo. Melo more clutch than QUEEN JAMES

  • http://slamonline.com wtf

    lebron didnt force overtime, he hit a halfcourt 3 pointer at the end of OT. Melo forced overtime with a 3 pointer, ice cold veins

  • MUBWAR

    Melo was just wet all over the court. Durant wasn’t very effective. Bosh and Lebron’s double double helped team lebron stay in the game. The last 2 q and OT were all star games with actual D. Did Bosh gain weight cause he looked as big as amar’e?

  • johnson

    All u people say lebron forced a OT damn well didn’t watch the game it was melooo u nuts

  • http://www.twitter.com/dfrance21 dfrance21

    But… that halfcourt 3 Lebron made was insane. He shot it like a foul line pull up jumper and nailed it.

  • MUBWAR

    behind the mid court line and he shot it like a normal 3p attempts dfrance. Now that’s strength

  • http://www.twitter.com/dfrance21 dfrance21

    Marbury used to shoot from half like that all the time. I miss Steph… before he went nuts and all.

  • MLK4Life

    Happy to see all of these guys stick together and play these games for the fans. Obviously, David Stern and the owners could care less about the players or their fans.

  • AQWORD

    Ball is Ball & always will always be. Fuk da critix. They have small dix.

  • http://slamonline.com Jeremy Bauman

    Nice write-up. Definitely right about the talent level…

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    So y’all gonna post the #19 in the top 50 or not??

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    Seriously, i’m foaming at the mouth Enig haha.

  • HOopER

    its not a coincidence that Lebron’s teams have been losing all summer

  • 3John3

    Lebron I’m sorry, but this year turn up the notch. the way you play the game sucks right now! Bring out the beast mode that everyone knows that oyu have! COME ON lEBRON I KNOW YOU CAN DO IT!

  • 3John3

    You

  • ben

    Lebron is going to look so weird when he’s bald

  • http://www.slamonline.com unf*ckwitable

    Sounds dope.

  • http://slamonline.com The Philosopher

    LONG… LIVE… THE KING!
    He lost the game?
    His face STILL graces the threads.

  • 3John3

    You got that right The Philosopher

  • http://www.nbadunks.org Steve
  • Patrick

    When the video gonna be out?

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