Redick Goes To First-Round Tiebreaker; Thompson Wins Three-Point Contest
TORONTO – J.J. Redick scored 20 points in the first round of the Foot Locker Three-Point Contest.
Redick’s score put him in a three-way tie with James Harden and Devin Booker, with only one of the three moving on after Golden State’s Klay Thompson and Stephen Curry scored 22 and 21, respectively. In the tiebreaker, Harden scored eight points, Redick scored nine and Booker scored 12, with Booker moving on.
“I wanted to win, and I didn’t make any secret about that this week,” Redick said. “That was my goal. I didn’t get it, but it was a lot of fun.”
Unfortunately for Redick, he said going into the competition Booker was his dark horse candidate to win, and Booker ended up being the reason Redick didn’t go to the next round. The 19-year-old from Phoenix was the youngest competitor in event history, and Booker finished third.
“He was starting with the money rack in the corner and I knew he would get a couple of those,” Redick said. “He kind of shoots it similar to Steph and Klay, honestly, in just how he gets the ball from the rack up. He did a good job.”
Toronto’s Kyle Lowry, Portland’s CJ McCollum and Milwaukee’s Khris Middleton were eliminated in the first round prior to the tiebreaker.
Redick hit all five shots on the first rack and the fourth rack during his first-round shooting, but the second rack gave him some trouble. Redick saved the money rack for the final rack, and he hit two of those money balls, which he said felt somewhat different from the other basketballs.
“They just feel weird,” Redick said. “But again, I wouldn’t have put the rack anywhere else. I didn’t want to start with it and didn’t want to have it on top. I’ll keep it there for any future invites.”
Redick said he enjoyed the experience more this year, knowing what to expect. He had fun getting two perfect racks in the first round and joked about being proud he didn’t hit any long twos this year.
“I talked to the referees beforehand and told them to warn me if I got anywhere near the line,” Redick said.
To move on to the second round, Curry needed to make his final shot. Curry hit it, but Thompson beat his teammate in the final round to win the competition.
“It was just fun because we have friendly trash talk between each other, and it's all lighthearted out there,” Thompson said. “You know, he's the best shooter I've ever seen, so this is a rare occurrence that he loses. So I'm just happy I caught him on an off night.”
Thompson said before the competition he really appreciates how Redick’s game has evolved and that Redick’s off-ball movement is second to none.
Redick, who said before the competition he’d relax with some Pinot noir if he won, said he’d need to hold off on the fancy bottle of DRC after the tiebreaker didn’t go his way.