Trail Blazers

Robert Covington is an underdog to win NBA Skills Challenge

Trail Blazers

NBA All-Star weekend is here and all eyes will be on the festivities in Atlanta.

Blazers fans will have plenty to watch with Damian Lillard playing in the All-Star game, Anfernee Simons in the Dunk Contest, and Robert Covington representing the Blazers in the NBA Skills Challenge. 

Oddsmakers have released their odds ahead of the event, and they aren't in favor of the Blazers. 

Anfernee Simons has the worst odds in the Dunk Contest at +250, and they aren't any better for Roco. 

Covington is currently at +550, the second-worst odds among the field of contestants. 

This according to PointsBet, the official sports betting partner of NBC Sports. 

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Luke Doncic and Chris Paul have the best odds at +240, while Julius Randle has the worst odds at +600.

The other two players in the field are Nikola Vucevic and Domantas Sabonis, both at +500.

Covington's participation in the event, regardless of outcome, is a big deal.

All-Star weekend this year will help highlight the importance of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU), and the league will commit more than $2.5 million to HBCU.

 

For Covington, this means a lot. As a graduate of Tennessee State University, Covington is the only player from an HBCU currently in the NBA. 

“For (the NBA) to come to me and highlight what they’re planning on doing and me being the only athlete from an HBCU in the NBA, it’s only right that I do it,” Covington said in an interview with Trail Blazers reporter Casey Holdahl. “It’s a great opportunity. Of course I would love to have a break but them types of experiences, you don’t really get to get. I was excited to be a part of that and for them to think about me within that moment. Being the only athlete from an HBCU, it gives kids like that hope that maybe someday there will be another one.”

Coverage of the event starts at 2:00 PM Sunday on TNT, with Covington taking the floor for the Skills Challenge at 3:30 PM, the All-Star Game at 5:00 PM, and the Slam Dunk Contest at halftime of the game.