One night after their emotional Jewish Heritage Night win at Madison
Square Garden on Tuesday night, the Kings continued their winning ways,
topping the Pistons 103-97 in Detroit.
Winning back-to-back road
games for only the second time this season, the victory was the team’s
18th of the season, surpassing its win total from last year.
most of the NBA has the weekend off to celebrate reaching the season’s
halfway point, two key components in the Kings’ resurgence boarded a
plane to Dallas Thursday to prepare for the 2010 All-Star Weekend
Known as the most fun three days of the NBA season,
All-Star Weekend brings the best in the game and the league’s brightest
rising stars under one roof to battle it out in an East vs West
Headlined by the All-Star Game on Sunday night, the
weekend also includes other festivities such as a celebrity game, the
Rookie Challenge, the three point contest and the fan favorite Slam
Speaking to The Jerusalem Post
Tuesday night’s matchup at Madison Square Garden, Casspi was thrilled
at having been selected to compete in the All-Star weekend, calling it
the greatest moment of his sports career along with being drafted in
“It is great to be recognized. It’s the top of the
basketball world. To be part of the Rookie Challenge, it’s very
exciting. I am honored and it is a dream come true.”
Casspi and teammate Tyreke Evans will represent the Kings on the rookie squad in the T-Mobile Rookie Challenge on Friday night.
known as the “Rookie/Sophomore Game,” the contest pits the top
first-year players against the top second-year players in a battle for
respect from the veterans.
Casspi, who enters the break
averaging 12.1 points, 5.0 rebounds and 1.4 assists per game while
shooting 47% from the field, will team up with fellow rookie sensations
Brandon Jennings of the Milwaukee Bucks and Stephen Curry of the Golden
In addition to the rookie game, Casspi has also
accepted an invitation to battle point guard Rajon Rondo of the Boston
Celtics and defending champion Kevin Durant in the “H.O.R.S.E.”
competition on Saturday night.
Based on the classic schoolyard
game, the event tests the participant’s shot-making skill. Once an
order is established between the three participants, the first player
will have 24 seconds to create and make a shot.
The next player
in order will have to match the shot made by the first player. A missed
shot following a made shot results in a letter, and players are
eliminated after five letters, when the word H-O-R-S-E is spelled.
The players will compete until one man is left standing, and that player will be named the 2010 H.O.R.S.E. champion.
the sophomores have beaten the rookies seven times in a row and eight
of ten overall since the competition’s inception, the rookies have an
exceptionally strong class this year.
What the rookies lack in
size with most of their big men being shooting forwards (such as
Casspi), they make up with excellent guard play from Evans, Jennings,
Curry and Jonny Flynn.
Look for the rookies to make things
interesting and give the Sophomores a run for their money, even if they
ultimately fall for the eighth straight time.
In terms of the
H.O.R.S.E. competition, things will not be easy for Casspi as he has to
face a crafty guard and the defending competition champion who has
played himself into one of the top players in the NBA this season.
Casspi has shown himself to be a player who feeds off of pressure and
thrives when in the national spotlight. He also has an array of
spectacular dunks that the other two lack, which could come into play.
Tune in for a great weekend of basketball fun, featuring Israel’s own golden boy!Joseph
D. Robbins is currently completing a Master’s in Education at Columbia
University in New York City. Check out his blog “Robbins Rants” at