2006 NBA All-Star recap

LeBron James leads a late East rally to become the youngest MVP in All-Star Game history.

EAST 122, WEST 120, at Toyota Center (Houston)


MVP: LeBron James, Cleveland Cavaliers

Box score

At the 2006 All-Star Game, the Detroit Pistons’ core of Ben Wallace, Rasheed Wallace, Chauncey Billups and Richard Hamilton showed why they were such an effective defensive combination.

That foursome, which teamed with LeBron James down the stretch, set the defensive tone as the East rallied from a 21-point hole to nab a 122-120 victory. James scored 29 points and became the youngest MVP in All-Star Game history, but the East got back in the game late in the third quarter.

That’s when Detroit’s four All-Stars entered the game and locked down on the West. Billups, who was playing in his first All-Star Game, had seven of the East’s final nine points in the fourth quarter. Hamilton and Rasheed Wallace added timely buckets while Ben Wallace locked down the middle on defense — something he did all season for the Pistons. Miami’s Dwyane Wade followed up an Allen Iverson miss with 16.6 seconds left to provide the winning margin.

Billups wasn’t the only first-time All-Star in this game; Toronto big man Chris Bosh had eight points off the East bench. For the West, Tony Parker made his debut, scoring eight points off the bench and Memphis’ Pau Gasol, also a first-time All-Star, had 12 rebounds off the bench in 14 minutes.

At All-Star Weekend, Knicks guard Nate Robinson won the first of his three career Slam Dunk titles while the Mavs’ Dirk Nowitzki became the first Dallas player to win the 3-Point Shootout. Wade claimed the first of his back-to-back Skills Challenge titles and at the Rookie Challenge, Sixers forward Andre Iguodala had 31 points as the Sophomores defeated the Rookies 105-96.

All-Star Game rosters

Eastern Conference

Allen Iverson (Philadelphia 76ers)

Dwyane Wade (Miami Heat)

Shaquille O’Neal (Miami Heat)

Vince Carter (New Jersey Nets)

LeBron James (Cleveland Cavaliers)

Ben Wallace (Detroit Pistons)

Rasheed Wallace (Detroit Pistons)

Chauncey Billups (Detroit Pistons)

Richard Hamilton (Detroit Pistons)

Chris Bosh (Toronto Raptors)

Paul Pierce (Boston Celtics)

Gilbert Arenas (Washington Wizards) **

Jermaine O’Neal (Indiana Pacers) *

Coach: Flip Saunders (Detroit Pistons)

Western Conference

Steve Nash (Phoenix Suns)

Kobe Bryant (Los Angeles Lakers)

Yao Ming (Houston Rockets)

Tracy McGrady (Houston Rockets)

Tim Duncan (San Antonio Spurs)

Kevin Garnett (Minnesota Timberwolves)

Ray Allen (Seattle Sonics)

Shawn Marion (Phoenix Suns)

Tony Parker (San Antonio Spurs)

Elton Brand (LA Clippers)

Dirk Nowitzki (Dallas Mavericks)

Pau Gasol (Memphis Grizzlies)

Coach: Avery Johnson (Dallas Mavericks)

All-Star Weekend Wrap

NBA Slam Dunk Contest winner: Nate Robinson, New York Knicks

NBA 3-Point Shootout winner: Dirk Nowitzki, Dallas Mavericks

NBA Skills Challenge: Dwyane Wade, Miami Heat

Rookie Challenge result: Sophomores 105, Rookies 96

Rookie Challenge MVP: Andre Iguodala, Philadelphia 76ers (30 points, six rebounds, four steals)

NOTE: * = missed game due to injury; ** = injury replacement