Joe Harris: 3-Point Contest Champion
Clutch performance as Harris holds off Curry for title
Joe Harris was the first man up and the last man standing.
Making his 3-Point Contest debut against a star-studded field, Harris walked away with the trophy after a clutch shooting performance in which he drained all five shots from his money ball rack to close out each round.
"Just fortunate to be here," said Harris after the win. "We were talking about it coming in, obviously the field was stacked. You've got some of the best shooters of all time in Dirk and Steph. Great shooters in their own regard. Just honored to be here, honored to compete with everybody."
Harris was facing a heavyweight field in the 10-man competition. Three of the four active players currently ahead of him on the career 3-point shooting list -- Seth Curry, Steph Curry and Buddy Hield -- were in the field, plus former champs Dirk Nowitzki and Devin Booker and hometown favorite Kemba Walker.
Players can place their money ball rack in any of their five shooting positions, and Harris left his for last -- then he made it count.
In the opening round, Harris opened the contest and knocked down his last eight shots to earn his spot in the finals with Steph Curry (27) and Hield (26). Harris edged out Danny Green and Devin Booker, each with 23, for the third spot in the finals.
The finals followed a similar arc. Again, Harris opened and again, Harris swept the money ball rack on his last five shots to finish with 26. Hield was up next, but didn't threaten Harris in scoring 19.
That brought up Curry, the two-time MVP who is fifth in career 3-point shooting (.4371), just a thread behind former Net Drazen Petrovic (.4374) and is shooting 44.4 percent on 531 3-point attempts this season.
Harris sat back and watched Curry make his first nine and then go to the money ball rack with the same 16 points that Harris did. Curry needed to make all five to tie, but when money ball No. 3 rattled off the rim, it clinched the title for Harris, with Curry finishing with 24.
Harris gave the Nets their second All-Star Saturday Night champion in two years, following Spencer Dinwiddie's Skills Competition win last season.
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