Main Event: The 2016 NBA (Celebrity) All-Star Game

There are few things greater in this world than sport at its purest. Sport is something capable of transcending boundaries, showcasing some of the world’s most talented people, and providing joy and wonder to those lucky enough to bear witness. From the Edmonton Grads, to the Miracle on Ice, to Usain Bolt’s record-breaking sprints, sport has long played a significant role in developing the identities of nations, and continues to influence how we look back on history. For these reasons, it is not uncommon for a person to eat, sleep, and breathe sports.

To those of you who live this life, just know that you are appreciated, and that you aren’t alone.

Sadly, there are also times when sport becomes unbearable. This is when we need to stay strong, hold our heads high, and avoid losing sight of what’s good in this world. Included in this realm of garbage is the NBA Celebrity All-Star Game, which is consistently the least entertaining event on the league’s calendar.

With the event being held tonight in Toronto, though, I felt it was my patriotic duty to keep you, the reader, informed. Often, people who can only be loosely described as “celebrities” take part in this event – thus, I took it upon myself to list the qualifications of each of this year’s participants. And so, I present this not-at-all serious scouting report for the 2016 NBA Celebrity All-Star Game.

TEAM CANADA

Head Coach:

Aubrey “Drake” Graham – Rapper, Toronto Raptors Global Ambassador

Qualifications: once airballed a 3-pointer while taking warmups with the Kentucky Wildcats; gave props to Paul Pierce…in the playoffs…after Pierce’s team beat the Raptors, who literally employ Drake;  looks like the kid brother of various NBA players.

You Only Live Once, but apparently you also fall in love several times.

Assistant Coaches:

Steve Nash – Two-time NBA MVP

Qualifications: Canadian legend; philanthropist; environmentalist; basketball genius; GM of Canadian Senior Men’s National Team; given credit for being able to drink Germans under the table; hero.

Jose Bautista – MLB All-Star, noted bat-flipper

Qualifications: central figure in the greatest Toronto sports moment since Joe Carter’s home run; will stare down referees after any questionable call made against Team Canada, and possibly throw a batting helmet if the situation requires it.

Roster:

Win Butler – Arcade Fire frontman

Qualifications: leader of one of the world’s most critically acclaimed bands; very tall. Weakness: not actually Canadian.

Pictured here with Kyle Lowry, who is “Ready to Start” his second consecutive All-Star Game.

Rick Fox – Three-time NBA Champion

Qualifications: managed to play with Kobe Bryant without getting murdered; impossibly handsome.

I didn’t even search for a picture of Rick Fox; this just comes up when you Google “dreamy.”

Stephan James – Actor

Qualifications: I’m likely far from the only person who had to Google him when the rosters were announced – makes for a great value pick to win MVP, though. Go get those odds, Stephan!

Even Stephan James looks unsure as to who Stephan James is.

Tracy McGrady – Former NBA scoring champion

Qualifications: former Toronto Raptor, who left town and immediately became one of the NBA’s most dangerous scorers; attempted to play professional baseball.           Weakness: not actually Canadian. (This weakness seems too common for Team Canada’s liking. Gonna have to gameplan around that).

Milos Raonic – Professional tennis player

Qualifications: putting Canadian professional tennis on the map; generally likable dude.

Drew and Jonathan Scott – HGTV’s “Property Brothers”

Qualifications: identical twins; tall; this game needs a Markieff/Marcus Morris vibe to really be a success.

Don’t let their charm fool you – Jonathan is a terror in the paint, and Drew will drain a deep 3 in your damn face.

Tammy Sutton-Brown – Former WNBA star

Qualifications: two-time WNBA All-Star; WNBA champion; very polite.

Kris Wu – Actor

Qualifications: The easy choice here would be to make a “Kris Who?” joke – there’s little doubt that this would be both clever and hilarious. However, we here at CanadianCollective would like you to know that Kris is a Canadian-Chinese actor, singer, and model, and is quite accomplished in his own right.

“I will dunk on your soul AND steal your girl.”

Snubs: 

J.E. Skeets, Tas Melas, Max Kerman

 

TEAM USA

Head Coach:

Kevin Hart – Actor, comedian

Qualifications: Four-time MVP of the NBA Celebrity All-Star Game; good for some harmless family entertainment; star of one million blurry memes your aunt shares on Facebook.

Unfortunately, Kevin Hart’s basketball skills are more impressive than his entire IMDB page.

Roster:

Anthony Anderson – Actor

Qualifications: starred in Kangaroo Jack; plays a vital role in accelerating the plot of the critically-acclaimed film, Harold And Kumar Go To White Castle.

Chauncey Billups – 5-time NBA All-Star

Qualifications: a friend of mine once mispronounced his name as “Bauncey Chillups”; former Raptor; named the 2004 NBA Finals MVP.

Muggsy Bogues – Former NBA player

Qualifications: shortest person to ever play in the NBA; former Raptor; is nicknamed “Muggsy.”

Pictured: Muggsy, right, with a fan.

Nick Cannon – Host of “America’s Got Talent”

Elena Delle Donne – WNBA MVP

Qualifications: naturally-gifted scorer; smooth jumper; name just rolls off your tongue.

Joel David Moore – Actor

Qualifications: best-known for his supporting role in 2004’s Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story; consequently knows how to dodge, duck, dip, dive, and dodge.

I’ll give you $100 if you actually remembered his character’s name in Dodgeball.

Marc Lasry – Co-owner, Milwaukee Bucks

Qualifications: absurdly rich; helped save the Bucks franchise from relocation; holds the esteemed title of “Oldest Player” in this year’s game.

No witty comment, for fear of getting sued by a man worth $1.9 billion.

Jason Sudeikis – Actor

Qualifications: supremely likable; part of an underrated period in Saturday Night Live history; married to Olivia Wilde, who is just great.

 

X-FACTORS

Team USA

Elena Delle Donne is at the top of her game, while Canada’s Tammy Sutton-Brown hasn’t played professionally since 2012. You have to think this will give the USA an advantage in terms of Actual Basketball Players.

Team Canada

Drake’s prior coaching experience led to an embarrassing 91-14 defeat (albeit to a team of giants). After studying the tape from this game, which can be found below, I came to a troubling conclusion. His body language on the sidelines and inability to make the correct in-game adjustments worry me, and he’ll need to lean heavily on his assistants for strategic decision-making in order for Team Canada to stand a chance.

THE FINAL VERDICT

Pictured: Canadian-Chinese actor Kris Who?

 

 

 

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