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Phoenix team falters from downtown, Detroit takes title

By John Schuhmann, NBA.com
Posted Feb 15 2009 1:29AM

PHOENIX -- The team from Phoenix was almost perfect in the eighth annual Haier Shooting Stars competition at All-Star Saturday Night. But almost doesn't count, and Team Detroit came away with its second win in the last three years.

Related Video
Watch highlights from the Haier Shooting Stars competition.
Play 1:47

Phoenix hit its first five shots and made it to halfcourt in just 14 seconds, but the halfcourt heave was the team's undoing. The three shooters from Phoenix -- Leandro Barbosa, Dan Majerle and Tangela Smith -- needed more than 20 attempts there before Majerle finally sank one. By that time, Team Detroit was celebrating its victory.

Detroit needed 13 attempts to get through its first five shots, but only seven from halfcourt as the Shock's Katie Smith drained her third try from long distance. Smith helped her coach, Bill Laimbeer, become the first person to win a second Shooting Stars title. He teamed with Swin Cash and Chauncey Billups when Detroit won in 2007. Smith and Laimbeer were joined by Arron Afflalo this time around. They completed their final round run in a time of 58.4 seconds.

"I'm happy Katie got some more hardware," Laimbeer said afterward. "She has collected a whole bunch of gold medals with a WNBA championship and MVP. Now she has got another one."

Photo Gallery
Check out some of the best pics from the Haier Shooting Stars competition. View Gallery

San Antonio, the defending Shooting Stars champions, was eliminated in the first round when David Robinson, Tim Duncan and Becky Hammon needed 15 attempts from halfcourt before Hammon sank one. They finished in 1:06. Los Angeles had a strong start, completing its first three shots in just four attempts, but needed 16 tries from halfcourt. The L.A. team of Derek Fisher, Lisa Leslie and Michael Cooper finished fourth with a time of 1:16.

The Rules

The object of the Haier Shooting Stars competition is for each team to make shots from six locations of increasing difficulty in the fastest time. The shots must come in order on the floor and within a set order among the three-person teams.

Each team chooses a specific order of shooting (Player A, B and C) and each shot must be made (unlimited attempts) before the next player begins shooting.

The Order

Shot 1: 10-foot bank shot from right-side angle (Player A)
Shot 2: 15-foot shot from left side-angle (Player B)
Shot 3: NBA 3-point shot from top of the arc/straight on (Player C)
Shot 4: 18-foot shot from right-side baseline (Player A)
Shot 5: NBA 3-Pt. shot from left side angle (Player B)
Shot 6: Shot from just inside half-court/straight on (Player C, Player A, Player B, repeat)

Each team is given two minutes to complete the course. The clock will be started at 0:00 and count up, and stopped by the referee's whistle when the team makes Shot 6. If a team doesn't complete all six shots as of the 2:00 mark, the horn will sound and their score will be based upon the total number of shots completed.

The two teams with the fastest times advance to the final round. In the case of a tie, a shoot-off will be used to break the tie. The clock will be reset (a time limit of 1:00 will be imposed) and the team that makes Shot 6 in the shortest amount of time will, depending on the round, either advance to the finals or be declared champions.

A referee will be on-court to pass judgment on any violation of the rules. At discretion of the referee, instant replay may be consulted for clarification of rules compliance.

The Participants

Team San Antonio: Tim Duncan, David Robinson and Becky Hammon
Team Detroit: Arron Afflalo, Bill Laimbeer and Katie Smith
Team Los Angeles: Derek Fisher, Michael Cooper and Lisa Leslie
Team Phoenix: Leandro Barbosa, Dan Majerle and Tangela Smith

History

2008: San Antonio Rocks

Tim Duncan and David Robinson are no strangers to winning with one another, so, with the added help of San Antonio Silver Stars sharpshooter Becky Hammon, it's no wonder they won yet another crown.

2008 Haier Shooting Stars
Look back on San Antonio's run to the 2008 Haier Shooting Stars trophy.
Play :50

After an impressive run in the first round, Team San Antonio took care of business in the finals of the 2008 Haier Shooting Stars challenge against Team Chicago, as Duncan drained a half-court shot to give the Texas threesome a time of 35.8 seconds.

2007: Detroit Wins Crown

Team Detroit won the 2007 Haier Shooting Stars challenge by default as team Chicago took its shots out of order in the final round on Saturday. The team of Bill Laimbeer, Chauncey Billups and Swin Cash had the second-best first-round time by finishing the six-shot course in 1:06 and then needed just 50.5 seconds to complete its final-round run.

Chicago had the best first-round time (48.9 seconds), followed by Detroit, defending champion San Antonio (1:32) and Los Angeles (2:00).

2006: San Antonio Takes Title

Team San Antonio dominated the competition in the 2006 Shooting Stars challenge with a record-setting time of 25.1 seconds. Tony Parker drilled the half-court shot on his first attempt to ice the contest.

The San Antonio trio, comprised of Parker, NBA legend Steve Kerr and the Silver Stars' Kendra Wecker, finished more than 15 seconds ahead of Team Los Angeles. Team Houston finished the six-shot course in 47.2 seconds, and last year's winners, Team Phoenix, took 47.7 ticks to hit all six buckets.

2005: Phoenix Rises To Occasion

WNBA Rookie of the Year Diana Taurasi of the Mercury, current Suns forward Shawn Marion and Phoenix legend Dan Majerle ran away with the Shooting Stars title in 2005, completing the competition in a mere 28 seconds.

The Phoenix triumvirate wowed the crowd, finishing 16 seconds ahead of second-place Denver. The Detroit squad came in third while the defending champs, the Lakers, were fourth.

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