When it comes to sheer entertainment, there may not be an event during the NBA’s All-Star Weekend that is as good of a time as the Celebrity Game. Every year, celebrities and people who have played basketball professionally come together to give us a wildly entertaining hoops exhibition that always seems to deliver the goods.
This year, it seems like we’ll get more of the same. The NBA announced the rosters for the 2018 Celebrity Game, which looks like it will bring the goods, even if four-time MVP Kevin Hart won’t be there for the second year in a row.
First, this year’s game will be the second year in a row where the head coaches will be a pair of ESPN personalities. Rachel Nichols will be on the bench for Team Lakers, while Katie Nolan will have the same role for Team Clippers. Both have assembled really good staffs: Nichols’ assistants will be Tracy McGrady and Michael B. Jordan, Nolan’s will be Paul Pierce and Common.
Here’s how the rosters break down.
Andre De Grasse
This game should be tremendous, especially because each of the last two MVPs (Armstrong and Butler) are in it, and because the list of current and former players (Dolson, Pierce, Williams, McGrady, Parker, Robinson) is absolutely loaded. Oh, and one more thing: The game is taking a page out of BIG3’s playbook and adding a four-point shot, which will pop up in the second half and be called “The RIDGE” due to a sponsorship with Ruffles.
“Celebrity players and NBA and WNBA legends will have the chance to confront the epic 4-point line live in the ‘4-for-4 Challenge,'” per a release. “For every shot made from ‘The RIDGE’ during the second half of the game, Ruffles will make a $4,000 donation to the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, with a minimum of $20,000 going to the charity (up to $40,000).”
As always, the Celebrity Game looks like it’s going to be a blast. The game will take place on Friday, Feb. 16 at 7 p.m. on ESPN.