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All-Stars take back seat in skills, 3-point and dunk competitions

All-Stars take back seat in skills, 3-point and dunk competitions

NEW ORLEANS -- The stars came out for All-Star Saturday Night at Smoothie King Center, but the biggest ones failed to win the skills, three-point or dunk competitions.

John Wall was a first-round exit in the Skills Competition when he failed to get past Gordon Hayward in the skills competition. Kristaps Porzingis (Knicks) made it two years in a row that a big man has won, outdoing All-Stars DeMarcus Cousins, Anthony Davis, Isaiah Thomas. Nikola Jokic and Devin Booker also participated.

"It's a good feeling that I'm able to showcase my skill with my size and show to the kids that you're capable of doing that even if you're tall and lanky like me," Porzingis, who stands 7-3, said. 

Eric Gordon had to go an extra session to break tie with All-Star Kyrie Irving for the three-point championship. All-Stars Klay Thompson, Kemba Walker, Nick Young, Wes Matthews, Kyle Lowry, C.J. McCollum 

"I'm used to the rims here. I'd been here for five years," said Gordon, who left the New Orleans Pelicans for the Houston Rockets this summer. "I've always been a pretty good shooter."

The slam-dunk contest had a surprise winner in Glenn Robinson III, who beat out favorite Aaron Gordon, DeAndre Jordon and the little-known Derrick Jones. Gordon was the 2016 runner-up in an epic showdown with Zach LaVine. 

Robinson, who plays with the Indiana Pacers, surprised even himself with his leaping ability. He jumped over two people stacked on top of one another to wow the judges for a perfect score.

"It's crazy. Like I said, I couldn't dunk until my sophomore year in high school, and now not even a decade later, I won an NBA dunk contest," Robinson said. "Going into this, I hadn't really practiced any trick dunks. I hadn't really got time. I focused on playing. I focused on starting and playing to the best of my ability. When they gave me this chance, it took me a week to come up with some things that nobody's ever seen in the NBA dunk contest. It was tough."

[RELATED: DeMarcus Cousins says Wall is NBA's best point guard]

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Cavaliers reportedly parting ways with coach John Beilein ahead of matchup with Wizards

Cavaliers reportedly parting ways with coach John Beilein ahead of matchup with Wizards

As the Wizards continue to enjoy the All-Star break and prepare for the stretch run toward the eighth seed in the Eastern Conference, their first opponent following the break just made a significant change to their team. 

According to The Athletic's Shams Charania and Jason Lloyd, the Cavaliers and head coach John Beilein have agreed to part ways after 54 games. It was Beilein's first year on the job after a 12-year run at Michigan. 

Cleveland is expected to promote associate head coach J.B. Bickerstaff to replace Beilein. 

According to The Athletic's report, several factors weighed on Beilein and the Cavaliers' decision to part ways, including the team's on-and-off-court struggles, and his son's resignation at Niagra University. The Cavs were 14-40 under their new head coach this season. 

For the Wizards, they're in a position to build off a two-game winning streak they built going into the All-Star break with a matchup against a bad Cavaliers team going through major structural changes. Though it's possible the Cavs could play better under new leadership. 

Entering Friday's clash with the Cavs, Washington sits three games behind the Magic for the last playoff spot in the East. 

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Monumental Sports auctioning off Wizards, Capitals gear in tribute of Kobe Bryant

Monumental Sports auctioning off Wizards, Capitals gear in tribute of Kobe Bryant

Capitals, Mystics and Wizards gear, including those worn in tribute of the late Kobe and Gianna Bryant, are being auctioned off by the Monumental Sports & Entertainment Foundation with all proceeds going to the Mamba & Mambacita Sports Foundation and the MambaOnThree Fund.

The auction began at noon Tuesday and will be open until the end of the second intermission of the Capitals’ game against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Sunday.

Some of the items available include an autographed No. 24 jersey Alex Ovechkin wore during pregame warmups Jan. 29 and signed Wizards “City Edition” jerseys that feature No. 8 or 24 with Bryant's name on them.

The Mamba & Mambacita Sports Foundation assists children and families in low-income communities by carrying out charitable initiatives through sports in memory of the Bryants who died in a helicopter crash Jan. 26.

The MambaOnThree Fund was set up to provide financial assistance to the other families who lost loved ones in the crash.

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