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What's The 411Sports is a weekly sports news and commentary television show produced by the Brooklyn-based independent television production company, What's The 411TV, which also produces What's The 411, an award-winning weekly entertainment and lifestyle television show.

The What's The 411Sports' promotional video consists of interviews with athletes from professional sports and college teams, sports executives, and fans.

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NBA All-Star Saturday: Skills Challenge

Patrick Beverley Shows He Has Skills

With the conclusion of the Degree Shooting Stars, the Taco Bell Skills Challenge began shortly after.

I know, just two more events until we can watch the Slam Dunk Contest.

As far as the skills challenge is concerned, this event is all about the point guard.

Since its debut in 2003, some of the best guards in NBA history, from the 2000's to the present, have been selected to showcase their PG skills and most importantly win.

Milwaukee Bucks Head Coach, Jason Kidd won this event in its first year of existence.

Miami Heat star Dwyane Wade is a two-time champion (06, 07) as well as future Hall-of-Famer, Steve Nash in (05,10).

The best up and coming guards in the NBA have contributed to this event and this year presented a new wave of the NBA's youngest new stars at the PG position.

And here are your gladiators: Patrick Beverley (Houston Rockets), Brandon Knight (Bucks, Now Phoenix Suns), Dennis Schroeder (Atlanta Hawks), Kyle Lowry (Toronto Raptors), Trey Burke (Utah Jazz) Isaiah Thomas (Suns, Now Boston Celtics), Jeff Teague (Atlanta Hawks) and Elfrid Payton (Orlando Magic).

In previous years, the course required the participants to first convert a layup, dribble between three obstacles, complete a pass into a net, shoot a mid-range jump-shot and proceed through a couple more obstacles, finishing the course with a layup, which stops the clock and serves as that players time.

This year, the course required those involved to dribble between a series of obstacles, complete a chest pass, convert a layup on the opposite basket and then return to the original basket, where a made three-point shot will stop the clock, signaling that players time.

Instead of the individual exhibitions we have seen in recent years where one player alone progresses through this obstacle course, the NBA has modified the competition where two players will compete against each other to determine who can finish the course before the other, tournament style.

The NBA is thinking smarter, thinking NOW, and its changes in the format of this event made for entertaining TV.

Just based off of the eye-test, I figured Teague would have the best chance to win or even Thomas, factoring their speed as my lone argument, and I was sadly mistaken.

This wasn't just about who was the fastest of the pool of players but who could be the most efficient guard for a couple of minutes. The conclusion of this event did not disappoint the viewers, especially if you favor the underdog.

In the first round, both sporting generous smirks, Beverley advanced to the next round against Thomas, who struggled to execute his first chest pass.

Thomas, due to his speed eventually caught up to Beverley at the three-point shot station, and several failed attempts by both players forced a layup challenge, as both players relied on their inside play, which Beverley outlasted Thomas and sealed his trip to the next round.

Next up, Teague, a member of the Eastern Conference division leading Hawks, showed that dominance on the floor and flew by Magic rookie Payton who, despite his enjoyable experience didn't look as though he was interested in winning.

Although Payton was able to keep up with the speedy veteran, Teague knocked down his first attempt from three, which eliminated Payton, as he was moments away.

In the final two match-ups of the first round, Knight de-throned the former Skills Challenge Champion, Burke on his third three-point attempt and Lowry represented "We The North" well, ending Schroeder's threat, wasting no time as he sped through the obstacles and connected on his first three-point attempt, with Schroeder in pursuit.

With the final four set, Beverley would continue his Cinderella story against Teague, a first-time All-Star, while Knight and Lowry would provide the other finalist.

While the grins remained on the exterior of our heroes, you could tell that their blood was boiling and that the competitive fire that we observe from these star athletes, throughout the NBA season, was present on Saturday night.

Of course in the smallest dosage possible.

And so it began, and Teague found himself exactly where he wanted to be.

He eased through the obstacles and successfully executed his first chest pass through the net, which took Beverley several tries, almost tying together his own shoes in securing his fate.

Teague converted his layup and jogged up the court, passing Beverley on his way, feeling comfortable about his chancing of having to only knock down one trifecta to compete for his first skills challenge championship, and somehow he came up short.

Atlanta, so far this season has won their share of games in an extensive fashion, but Teague, unfortunately, failed to bring home more good news.

Instead, Beverley's performance, this round, mirrored his NBA game.

He doesn't give up and he never backs down.

Although he was behind with Teague attempting his first three-point shot to advance, Beverley took advantage of Teague's first two-misses and connected on his first attempt, earning a spot in the final round.

Shortly after his shot, Beverley taunted the bench a little, all in fun and celebrated with teammate James Harden who was in attendance, as if this was Beverley's sole purpose for All-Star Saturday night.

Who says the Skills Challenge doesn't mean anything?

In the other finalist, Knight prevailed, knocking down his first three-point shot before Lowry could even challenge.

And with that result, Knight would battle it out with Beverley for the crown.

Maybe the writing was on the wall and I was unaware, because it seemed as if, on this night, everything went Beverley's way in this competition and the good vibes would follow the Rocket into the final round.

Yet again, Beverley found himself recovering from miscues.

Beverley's struggles with the chest pass almost cost him the title, but Knights initial misses to seal the deal from three, allowed Beverley to close the gap, and like the second round against Teague, Beverley sank his first three point attempt and entered the winner's circle.

"Definitely blessed to be here," said Beverley during his interview as he was awarded the honor.

"Blessed to be in this position. Blessed to even be in the NBA, coming from a humble beginnings."

Beverley, known for his defensive prowess and role on the Rockets as a perimeter lock-down defender, was given the stage to show the other facets of his game, and in doing so shattered the odds and early predictions.

"I hope Coach McHale is watching, and maybe I can get some plays now," Beverley said through laughter.

Hey if you can win the Skills Challenge and uplift yourself as well as your teams notoriety even though there was no final score except entertainment, then maybe he should have a couple X's and O's dedicated to his performance.

Even with the win, Beverley appreciated his exposure and did so with class.

"Getting to the NBA now, replacing someone and getting a chance to display my talents out here and winning it; helping a young kid like this for school and everything, it's, you know, a big testimony-- a bit humbled about it and definitely appreciate it."

I think Beverley made some news fans Saturday night.

NBA All-Star Saturday: Degree Shooting Stars Challenge

Team Bosh Earns Bragging Rights with its Third Straight Title

The NBA All-Star Weekend is similar to meals at your favorite restaurant.

All-Star Friday is the bread you consume while you mull over the choices on the menu.

All-Star Saturday is the appetizer, nourishing your body, moderately.

And then All-Star Sunday is not only the main course, but it is your favorite entrée.

In a restaurant, you can choose to go straight for the main course, but with the NBA All-Star Weekend, you don't want to skip the appetizer.

First and foremost, the Barclays Center and the NBA presented a visual show. The basketball court became a viewing screen of moving images with intros to each event creating an atmosphere that just screamed entertainment.

In two words, sheer beauty.

Beautiful as it might have been, the fans did not come to Barclays on a brisk Saturday night to watch fireworks.

It was all about the individuals participating in the best ticket in town, four events in one.

Saturday night, billed as the State Farm All-Star Saturday Night, featured: the Degree Shooting Stars Challenge; Taco Bell Skills Challenge; Footlocker Three-Point Contest; and the event of the night, the Sprite Slam Dunk Contest.

The Degree Shooting Stars was not the most highly anticipated event, but it registered high on the excitement meter. It involved four teams connecting on shots with varying degrees of difficulty at different parts on the floor. The team taking the least amount of time to advance to the championship round wins.

Team Curry (Sue Bird, Stephen Curry, Dell Curry), Team Westbrook (Russell Westbrook, Penny Hardaway, Tamika Catchings), Team Millsap (Paul Millsap, Scottie Pippen, Elena Delle Donne) and the two-time reigning champs in Team Bosh (Chris Bosh, Dominique Wilkins and Swin Cash) all competed for the bragging rights.

It's a good thing I am not a betting man. I would have lost by betting on Team Curry.

In the first round, Catchings, a nine-time WNBA All-Star, almost cost her team a trip to the championship round missing her first seven field goals (19.0 seconds). But, Westbrook and Hardaway, bailed out Catchings by sinking their first attempts from the top of the key and the elbow three (5.0 seconds).

And on the 4th shot, Hardaway reminded everyone why he was selected to be on Team Westbrook sinking his attempt from half-court. Team Westbrook completed their shot-circuit in 35.2 seconds.

But Team Bosh would have their say.

They've been here before, they knew what to do.

And so they did it.

Team Bosh bested Team Westbrook by connecting on all of their shots in eight attempts to Team Westbrook's 10 in only 30.8 seconds.

Next up, the championship round, and the favorite prevailed once more.

Team Westbrook was on a roll in the championship round during its first three shots.

Catchings learned her lesson and used the backboard, knocking down the first required shot; smart.

Hardaway executed his first attempt successfully and Westbrook missed his first and made his second. Team Westbrook completed its first three shots of the championship round in 13 seconds.

All was well until Team Westbrook ran into the half-court shot, the toughest of all four shots. The team missed 26 consecutive attempts as time expired, which put them in position for an upset.

As for Team Bosh, there was no rush.

Team Bosh took its time and at the 57.6 seconds mark, the legend, Wilkins clinched Team Bosh's third straight title on their seventh attempt from half-court.

"Chemistry," said Wilikins when asked how Team Bosh has been able to defend its title. "We just wanted to repeat what we did last year. We did the same thing last year. We didn't want to change it, for luck."

"I think we don't take it so serious," said Cash answering the same question following the event. "Over the last three years we've seen a lot of just everybody; we're so competitive as athletes. When we come out here, it's really simple. We have a good time. We joke around. We miss the shot; all right, we'll get the half-court shot. We just keep it loose. It's fun. And we strategize."

All records are meant to be broken, even championship streaks. But, Team Bosh has a system that works and next year, at the 2016 NBA All-Star Weekend hosted by our neighbors up North in Toronto, Team Bosh may be tough to de-throne.

NBA House: NBA All-Star Weekend’s Best Kept Secret

NBA House treats fans to an experience of interactive activities, video highlights, prizes, and half-court basketball

As much as the 2015 NBA All-Star Weekend, this year in New York City, revolves around a collection of the elite basketball talents the NBA has to offer, NBA House, which began on Tuesday February 10th and runs through Saturday, February 15, takes a different approach.

NBA House is pretty much the NBA's answer to what a Dave & Buster's would look like if the NBA remixed its format for a day.

And that's what it was: a basketball party.

Held at the Skylight at Moynihan Station across from Madison Square Garden in Manhattan and LIU Brooklyn's Paramount Theatre, there was NBA basketball everywhere.

In the two available rooms of fun, the second and largest room featured half-court basketball courts where fans could shoot-around and receive basketball tips from instructors.

Flat-screen televisions were positioned on the walls and pillars around the room, displaying NBA content from this season and past highlights of NBA All-Star Weekend.

PlayStation offered several video game demo kiosks, where fans could compete against one-another in the latest installment of the bestselling NBA basketball simulation in NBA 2K15, on the next gen system, PlayStation 4.

Panini America Inc., specializes in exclusive memorabilia of all the major sports leagues including the NBA, featured its best signed NBA products, such as Jerseys and shoes autographed by Cleveland Cavaliers guard Kyrie Irving and Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant.

State Farm, another NBA partner, took fan photos and offered a basketball skills station. PlayStation, provided fans with the NBA 2K15 demos, in which they judged all participants in their total assists.

Samsung displayed its technological prowess with some of its latest gadgets. The technology and electronics giant gave visitors an opportunity to test drive its Samsung's Gear VR virtual reality headset.

And if that wasn't enough, NBA legends Horace Grant and Muggsy Bogues interacted with the game's youngest fans, by helping kids find the answers to many of the games they played in front of an audience.

NBA-legend-Horace-Grant-interacting-with-fans-at-NBA-HouseNBA legend Horace Grant interacting with fans at NBA House. Photo Credit: Gregory Alcala/ What's The 411 Networks

Muggsy-Bogues NBA House-Moynihan-Station 265x514Former NBA player Muggsy Bogues. Photo Credit: Gregory Alcala/What's The 411 Networks

The entry space featured Kia, the NBA's official car. KIA Motors exhibited some of its finest automobiles alongside, another NBA partner Sprite, which gave fans the opportunity to enter a music recording booth and freestyle over pre-selected instrumentals. I must admit it was very tempting once I heard the beat.

Although the NBA House is not the primary reason why fans love the annual NBA All-Star weekend, it prevailed in treating basketball fans to a great hands-on and sensory NBA experience.

"This event showcases a little of everything of the NBA" said Sheri Simonson, a marketing Manager at Panini America inc. to WhatsThe411TV.

"It gives everyone a hands-on experience, and it also educates everyone on the NBA, the league and its players, and its All-Stars," Simonson added.

But wait, there's more.

"This event is awesome," said David Porter also a representative of Panini America Inc. "It brings people out to showcase the NBA's best talent once a year, there's lots of events and energetic participation but it also shows all of the people behind the scenes and what they do."

So basically, what she said.

Toronto Raptors Defeat Brooklyn Nets in OT (Minus Kyle Lowry)

Brook Lopez and Jarrett Jack Gave it Their All

With the NBA All-Star Weekend break approaching, the Brooklyn Nets will this year play hosts to the Friday and Saturday NBA All-Star events. Tonight, the Nets welcomed a team boasting a first-time NBA All-Star starter.

The Toronto Raptors, first in the Atlantic division and 2nd in the Eastern Conference standings (31-15), along with the entire league were informed last Thursday that their floor general, Kyle Lowry will play on Sunday, earning his first career All-Star selection.

After being snubbed from last year's game, Lowry's exploits on the hardwood this year could no longer go un-noticed. He is averaging 19.4 points, 7.4 assists, 4.9 rebounds and 1.6 steals.

Fortunately for the Raptors, Lowry was hardly needed as his amigos did all the rest, in extra time.

Behind the strong production of the starters, not named Lowry, and the bench, the Toronto Raptors handed the Nets their fourth-straight loss, in overtime, 127-122.

The Nets are now ten games under .500 at (18-28) while the Raptors improved to (32-15).

Don't always expect the All-Stars to exhibit All-Star performances, they do have teammates that can also play, I mean this is the NBA right?

Six players scored in double-figures for the Raptors, with Demar Derozan leading the team in scoring with 26 points, followed by sixth man, Lou Williams contributing 25 points.

Amir Johnson and Jonas Valanciunas of the Raptors front-court, chipped in 24 and 14 respectively, and Patrick Patterson chose his spots wisely, scraping up 12 points of his own.

Oh yea, Lowry, the All-Star struggled all night long shooting 4-17 from the field for 10 points, affecting the game in other ways with 8 assists, 6 rebounds and 2 steals.

As for the home-team, the Brooklyn fans in attendance tonight, despite the loss should be proud of the effort the Nets exhibited on a chilly Friday night.

The Nets battled back from extensive deficits all-game long, which included a 19-2 run in the 4th quarter, led by Jarrett Jack, who scored eight of his team-high 35 points in the final quarter.

However, it wasn't enough.

Brook Lopez stepped up with an offensive explosion tonight albeit missing a potential game-winner in the 4th quarter, scoring an identical 35 points, like his teammate, Jack.

"More than execution, they made shots," said Nets Head Coach Lionel Hollins during his post-game press-conference.

Lionel-Hollins Postgame-Press-Conference 20150105 222307.mp4.Still003

Brooklyn Nets head coach Lionel Hollins talking with the media. Photo Credit: What's The 411 Networks

"I mean, Jarrett had a lot of big plays, got to the basket, got to the free throw line. Brook...actually got to the basket a few times, and then he made some shots outside, but he just got to the basket on drives."

However, it wasn't enough.

Extra Time Extends the Inevitable for the Nets

This was the type of game that if the Nets were unable to secure the win within the league standard of four quarters, forget about trying to find the win in overtime.

It just wasn't going to happen.

With each basket the Nets scored, the Raptors had an answer.

With 2:57 left in OT, a Lopez hook shot assisted by Jack which, at the time gave the Nets a 117-116 lead, was offset by a Derozan pull-up jump-shot, taking the lead, 118-117.

Shortly after, Jack drove the lane and connected on a floater with 56.6 seconds remaining in OT, tying the game at 122 all, in which Amir Johnson executed a put-back layup, off of a Derozan missed layup, giving the Raptors the go-ahead bucket.

The Raptors led 124-122, which proved to be the deciding play, as they never looked back, ending the Nets threat altogether.

The Nets would not be able to come from behind and extend the resiliency they have shown all night long.

There's only so much Jack and Lopez can do within the confines of team basketball until shots that were once falling ceased.

"Jack and Brook played unbelievably," said Mason Plumlee post-game.

Mason-Plumlee MG 5957 resized 600x400

Brooklyn Nets center Mason Plumlee. Photo Credit: Alexis Williams/What's The 411 Networks

"They really willed us and kept us in the game."

As far as statistical performances go, it was one of the best performances I have seen from both Brook and Jack, but tonight's loss validated what we should all realize regarding the makeup of this Nets team.

They just aren't good enough.

But there's a reason why the Raptors were able to win this game and it has nothing to do with the box score.

Good teams find a way to win tough games, and tonight, Derozan played a significant part in orchestrating the final results benefiting the Raptors with timely shots in desperation.

"Every day is extra motivation, honestly," Derozan said in the opposing locker-room post-game.

"I just try to pick up the slack sometimes when we may need to get it going or when we may need something."

Tonight's loss was the second game in a row the Nets legitimately challenged a superior being and failed to deliver the goods; just two days ago, it was a loss to the Atlanta Hawks, 113-102.

"We just played the two top teams in the Eastern Conference back-to-back and gave them both good games," said Lopez post-game.

"I think we just need to look at what we did well tonight and what we didn't do right and continue to get better."

How much better can the Nets realistically be when they can't get past the best teams in the East?

Coming Down the Pipe

Over the Next 5-games, the Nets will face the likes of the Los Angeles Clippers, the Toronto Raptors (again this time in Toronto), the New York Knicks, Washington Wizards and Milwaukee Bucks.

This could get ugly or is it too late?

After the way the Nets lost tonight, moral victories have become a necessity for a team that can't get out of its own way.

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