Kyle Lowry To Participate In 2015 Taco Bell Skills Challenge
The NBA announced Thursday that guard Kyle Lowry will participate in the 2015 Taco Bell Skills Challenge as part of State Farm All-Star Saturday Night. He is the second Raptor to take part in the event following DeMar DeRozan last year. The Taco Bell Skills Challenge will take place February 14 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.
Lowry has been voted by the fans as a starter to the Eastern Conference team for the 2015 All-Star Game after finishing second among East guards with 805,290 votes. He is the third Raptor to be elected a starter, joining Vince Carter (2000-04) and Chris Bosh (2007). Lowry is the fifth Raptor to be named to the Eastern Conference All-Star team: Bosh (2006-10), Carter (2000-04), Antonio Davis (2001) and DeRozan (2014).
This season Lowry is averaging career highs in points (18.8), rebounds (4.8), assists (7.4) and steals (1.60) through 50 games. He is tied for 21st in the NBA in scoring and tied for eighth in assists. Lowry was named Eastern Conference Player of the Month for December after posting averages of 22.3 points, 8.9 assists and 4.2 rebounds in 15 games. He helped the Raptors to an 11-4 record. Lowry led all players in scoring through the first week of December with 29.3 points and was named Eastern Conference Player of the Week (December 1-7).
The Taco Bell Skills Challenge format calls for two players to compete simultaneously on an identical course with the fastest finisher reaching the next round. In the first round, the eight players have been paired to participate in four head-to-head competitions. The four winners advance to the second round, where two more head-to-head showdowns will determine the two finalists. Complete rules can be found at mediacentral.nba.com.
As part of this year’s Taco Bell Skills Challenge, four lucky teens will be paired with the NBA participants. Through the Taco Bell Foundation for Teens, $120,000 will be donated to local Boys & Girls Clubs in support of educational scholarships and teen empowerment. Each teen participating in the Challenge will receive educational scholarships between $10,000 and $30,000.
NBA All-Star 2015 in New York City will bring together some of the most talented and passionate players in the league’s history for a global celebration of the game. The 64th NBA All-Star Game will reach fans in 215 countries and territories in 47 languages. TNT will televise the All-Star Game for the 13th consecutive year, marking Turner Sports' 30th year of All-Star coverage, as well as the BBVA Compass Rising Stars Challenge and State Farm All-Star Saturday Night. Other events at Barclays Center include the NBA Development League All-Star Game presented by Kumho Tire and the NBA Development League Dream Factory presented by Boost Mobile on Sunday, February 15, airing on NBA TV. Madison Square Garden will host Friday night’s ESPN-televised Sprint NBA All-Star Celebrity Game.
Below is the roster and bracket for the 2015 Taco Bell Skills Challenge:
2015 TACO BELL SKILLS CHALLENGE PARTICIPANTS
Participant, Team Pos. Ht. Wt.
Trey Burke, Utah Jazz G 6-1 185
Jimmy Butler, Chicago Bulls G/F 6-7 220
Michael Carter-Williams, Philadelphia 76ers G 6-6 190
Brandon Knight, Milwaukee Bucks G 6-3 189
Kyle Lowry, Toronto Raptors G 6-0 205
Jeff Teague, Atlanta Hawks G 6-2 181
Isaiah Thomas, Phoenix Suns G 5-9 185
John Wall, Washington Wizards G 6-4 195