James elected players' union vice president
NEW YORK — LeBron James is about to play a new power position — vice president.
The Cavaliers star was unanimously elected first vice president of the National Basketball Players Association on Friday, giving the game's top player a leadership role within a union set to square off in the future with the league's owners over revenue.
James was elected during the union's annual meeting as part of All-Star weekend at a hotel near Times Square. A person familiar with James' election said Clippers All-Star guard Chris Paul, the union's president, had urged the four-time MVP to accept a prominent role within the union. The person, who spoke on condition of anonymity before union executive director Michele Roberts announced the election, said James wanted to be deeply involved in future collective bargaining with the league.
Roberts could hardly wait to announce James' addition.
"We have a new vice president who was elected unanimously. His name is LeBron James," she said, saying it slowly for emphasis. "I cannot tell you how delighted I am because it simply confirms that our union is supported by players all across the spectrum. LeBron's addition to our executive committee is evidence of that. This is a great day for our union."
James, who considered running for president before Paul was elected, has been outspoken on several player-related issues already. But he'll now have a formal seat alongside Paul at the bargaining table, giving the union a formidable executive branch at an important time.
3-POINT CONTEST: Today's 3-point-shooting contest during the NBA’s All-Star weekend is expected to be the best ever.
League officials secured Golden State’s backcourt duo of Klay Thompson and Stephen Curry.
Then they got Kyle Korver, currently tied for the league lead with 161 3s and impressively atop the NBA in accuracy with staggering 52.3 percent success behind the arc.
Throw in James Harden, and sure, Kyrie Irving, J.J. Redick and also Wesley Matthews, who is tied with Korver and Curry for most 3-pointers made.
Marco Belinelli won the event a year ago, and he’ll be there too.
RISING STARS: Andrew Wiggins scored 22 points, Rudy Gobert added 18 points, 12 rebounds and three blocked shots, and the World team beat the U.S. 121-112 on Friday night in the Rising Stars Challenge at All-Star weekend.
Wiggins, the No. 1 pick from Canada who plays for Minnesota, was chosen as the game's MVP.
Brooklyn's Bojan Bogdanovic of Croatia, playing on his home court, and Chicago's Nikola Mirotic from Montenegro each added 16 points for the World.
Orlando's Victor Oladipo and Zach LaVine of Minnesota each scored 22 points for the U.S. team in the game between rookies and second-year players.
It was another new format for the opening game of All-Star weekend, which originated as a contest between teams of rookies, later turned into rookies against second-year players, and this year changed to the world against U.S. players.
CELEBRITY: Little League phenom Mo'ne Davis was so impressive on a basketball court she momentarily silenced trash-talking "Wedding Ringer" star Kevin Hart.
Playing in the All-Star Celebrity Game against opponents more than twice her age, the 13-year-old drove past Hart, the game's MVP for the fourth time, with a spectacular spin move for an easy layup in the first quarter Friday night.
Madison Square Garden was abuzz with stars from the NBA, WNBA and Hollywood two nights before the NBA All-Star Game is played Sunday. But much of the attention was on the teenager, who got one of the loudest ovations from the crowd when she was introduced before the game.
Davis, a pitcher, shot to fame as the first girl to win a Little League World Series game. Only in eighth grade, Davis already plays basketball for the high school varsity team. She finished the All-Star Game with four points, helping the West team beat the East 59-51. Hart had 15 points.