Gunning from deep
The Three-Point Contest is a staple of any All-Star Weekend, and has taken on a role of increased importance over the years as NBA teams and players place greater emphasis on the three-point shot. Outside shooting is now a priority for any franchise, and pure shooters have proliferated through the League. The competition is a hotly-contested struggle for bragging rights, as each of these shooters stakes their claim as the supreme marksman.
1988: Larry Bird is the iconic face of the Three-Point Contest, with his infamous trash-talking and bravado. From asking the field of competitors about their fight for second place, to completing the contest without even taking off his warm-ups, these legendary tales provide evidence of Bird’s otherworldly confidence. As a three-time contest winner, no win was more thrilling than in 1988, where he hit the final ‘money ball’ to clinch the win and had the audacity to celebrate as soon as the ball left his fingertips.
1991: Craig Hodges shares the honor with ‘Larry Legend’ as the only players to win the contest three times. The sharpshooter out of Illinois was so accurate that the NBA invited him to the 1993 All-Star Weekend as the defending champion, although he had not signed with any team at that point in time. 1991 was his moment of glory, as he hit a record 19 consecutive shots to get the crowd hyped and obliterate the competition.
2018: The contest was modified in 2014 to allow shooters to designate a full rack of ‘money balls’ at their favorite spot. This has increased the maximum score from 30 to 34 points, and Devin Booker took advantage of this change to set the record with 28 points. The record was swiftly broken in the same year by Allie Quigley of the Chicago Sky, who hit a mark of 29 and drained her entire ‘money ball’ rack to best Kayla McBride. Even more impressively, the 5-foot-10 sniper achieved this during half-time of the WNBA All-Star Game, which she had participated in.