1997 NBA All-Star recap
EAST 132, WEST 120, at Gund Arena (Cleveland)
MVP: Glen Rice
The East overcame a slow start thanks to 26 points off the bench from Charlotte forward Glen Rice. Rice, who led all scorers, nailed four 3-pointers to help the East climb out of a 13-point hole after the first quarter as he became the first Hornets player to win All-Star MVP honors.
Michael Jordan added another line to his already stellar resume when he became the first player in All-Star Game history to notch a triple-double. Jordan finished with 14 points, 11 rebounds, 11 assists and two steals.
Golden State’s Latrell Sprewell topped the West with 19 points off the bench, while Seattle’s Gary Payton added 17 points and 10 assists.
For four stars of the 1980s and ’90s — the Pistons’ Joe Dumars, the Knicks’ Patrick Ewing, the Bulls’ Scottie Pippen and the Rockets’ Hakeem Olajuwon — this marked the finale in their All-Star Game careers.
Ewing missed the game due to injury while Dumars, a reserve for the East, played just 10 minutes and scored three points. Pippen started the game for the East at forward, notching eight points and three rebounds in 25 minutes. Olajuwon, a starter for the West at center, had 11 points and three rebounds in 28 minutes.
The weekend also featured the debut of two all-time NBA greats; Los Angeles Lakers rookie guard Kobe Bryant (who won the Slam Dunk contest) and Allen Iverson, the rookie point guard for the Philadelphia 76ers. Iverson was named the MVP of the Rookie Game despite 31 points from Bryant in a losing effort. Neither rookie played in the All-Star Game.
Bryant also made his mark at All-Star Weekend in another event: the Slam Dunk Contest. He became the first Laker to claim the trophy in his first (and only) appearance in the event. At the 3-Point Shootout, Bulls guard Steve Kerr won the title, joining Craig Hodges as the only Bulls players to ever win the event.
All-Star Game rosters
Michael Jordan (Chicago Bulls)
Anfernee Hardaway (Orlando Magic)
Dikembo Mutombo (Atlanta Hawks)
Scottie Pippen (Chicago Bulls)
Grant Hill (Detroit Pistons)
Joe Dumars (Detroit Pistons)
Vin Baker (Milwaukee Bucks)
Terrell Brandon (Cleveland Cavaliers)
Christian Laettner (Atlanta Hawks)
Glen Rice (Charlotte Hornets)
Chris Webber (Washington Bullets) **
Tim Hardaway (Miami Heat) **
Alonzo Mourning (Miami Heat) *
Patrick Ewing (New York Knicks) *
John Stockton (Utah Jazz)
Gary Payton (Seattle SuperSonics)
Hakeem Olajuwon (Houston Rockets)
Shawn Kemp (Seattle SuperSonics)
Karl Malone (Utah Jazz)
Eddie Jones (L.A. Lakers)
Mitch Richmond (Sacramento Kings)
Latrell Sprewell (Golden State Warriors)
Tom Gugliotta (Minnesota Timberwolves)
Kevin Garnett (Minnesota Timberwolves) **
Chris Gatling (Dallas Mavericks) **
Detlef Schrempf (Seattle SuperSonics) **
Charles Barkley (Phoenix Suns) *
Clyde Drexler (Houston Rockets) *
Shaquille O’Neal (L.A. Lakers) *
All-Star Weekend wrap-up
Slam Dunk contest: Kobe Bryant, L.A. Lakers
Three-Point Shootout: Steve Kerr, Chicago Bulls
Rookie Game: East 96, West 91
Rookie Game MVP: Allen Iverson, Philadelphia 76ers (19 points, nine assists on 7-for-11 shooting for the East)
NOTE: * = missed game due to injury; ** = injury replacement