City Sports Report

Five judges announced for 2015 Slam Dunk Contest

Sprite Slam Dunk Contest

The NBA named their five judges for the Slam Dunk Contest that takes place on Saturday at Barclays Center.  What are your thoughts on the list?  Post your comments below.

“JULIUS ERVING, WALT FRAZIER, NATE ARCHIBALD, BERNARD KING, AND CHRIS MULLIN TO JUDGE SPRITE® SLAM DUNK AT STATE FARM® ALL-STAR SATURDAY NIGHT

– Pop Sensation Ella Henderson to Take the Stage as Part of “Entertainment Series Presented by JBL” at NBA All-Star 2015 –

– Anthony Anderson to Host the Night with TNT’s Kevin Harlan and Reggie Miller, Along with “Inside the NBA” Studio Team of Ernie Johnson, Charles Barkley, Kenny Smith, and Shaquille O’Neal Broadcasting Live –

NEW YORK, Feb. 10, 2015 – The National Basketball Association (NBA) announced today that NBA Legends Julius “Dr. J” Erving, Walt “Clyde” Frazier, Nate “Tiny” Archibald, Bernard King, and Chris Mullin will serve as judges for the 2015 Sprite Slam Dunk on Saturday, Feb. 14.  All five Hall of Famers will be part of a thrilling State Farm All-Star Saturday Night at Barclays Center, where 10 NBA All-Stars and platinum-selling pop sensation Ella Henderson will showcase their talents exclusively on TNT, beginning at 7:30 p.m. ET.

The judges for the 30th Sprite Slam Dunk all have strong ties to New York.  Erving, an iconic dunker and three-time ABA MVP with the Nets, is a Long Island native and 11-time NBA All-Star.  Frazier led the New York Knicks to two NBA titles and is in his 26th season as a Knicks broadcaster.  Archibald, the only player to lead the NBA in points and assists in the same season, was born and raised in the Bronx.  King is a four-time All-Star from Brooklyn, while Mullin is also a Brooklyn native who starred at St. John’s University in Queens before a 16-year NBA career that included five All-Star appearances.

Visit NBA.com to see the most iconic dunks in Slam Dunk contest history.

State Farm All-Star Saturday Night will also feature the Foot Locker Three-Point Contest, Taco Bell® Skills Challenge and Degree® Shooting Stars.  Some of the league’s top players headline this year’s participants, including Stephen Curry, the leading vote-getter in NBA All-Star Balloting 2015 presented by Sprint, as well as fellow All-Stars Chris Bosh, Jimmy Butler, Anthony Davis, James Harden, Kyrie Irving, Kyle Lowry, Jeff Teague, Klay Thompson, and Russell Westbrook.

In addition to the talent on the court, international singer-songwriter Henderson – who first turned heads as a finalist on “The UK X Factor” – will entertain the crowd with her platinum hit single “Ghost,” from her debut album “Chapter One,” as part of the “Entertainment Series Presented by JBL.”  With HARMAN serving as the Official Sound of the NBA, its featured brand, JBL, will serve as presenter of this year’s NBA All-Star Entertainment Series.  HARMAN and the NBA previously announced that six-time GRAMMY® Award-winning pop icon Christina Aguilera, joined by the Rockettes, will tip off the 64th NBA All-Star Game on Sunday at Madison Square Garden.  Superstar recording artist Ariana Grande will follow Aguilera and the Rockettes with a halftime performance that includes a compilation of her biggest hits.

Anthony Anderson – star and executive producer of the new hit show “black-ish” – will join play-by-play commentator Kevin Harlan and analyst Reggie Miller to host Saturday night’s festivities.  Alongside Anderson, Harlan, and Miller will be TNT’s multiple-time Sports Emmy® Award-winning “Inside the NBA” team of Ernie Johnson, Charles Barkley, Kenny Smith, and Shaquille O’Neal.  Smith, a former McDonald’s All-American at Archbishop Molloy High School in Queens, will also join Harlan and Miller as an analyst for the Sprite Slam Dunk.

The night will also include performances by the Brooklyn United Marching Band, a non-profit musical group with a special focus on academics featuring musicians ages five to 23-years-old from the borough.  Brooklyn United aims to impact the lives of Brooklyn youth through music, offering after school, Saturday and summer programs.
In addition to being the title partner of All-Star Saturday Night, State Farm, together with the NBA, will donate $500,000 to refurbish 10 indoor basketball courts – two per borough – in partnership with the New York City Department of Education.  The court refurbishments are part of the seasonlong NBA Cares All-Star community efforts to reach one million youth across the five boroughs.

About the Artists

Anthony Anderson – Anthony Anderson is star and executive producer of ABC’s freshman sitcom “black-ish,” the breakout comedy of the 2014-15 season. He plays the main character in the series and stars opposite Tracee Ellis Ross and Laurence Fishburne.  He is also host of the Food Network’s “Eating America.”  Anderson got his start attending the High School for the Performing Arts in Los Angeles, where he earned first place in the NAACP’s ACTSO Awards with his performance of the classic monologue from “The Great White Hope.”  That performance earned him an arts scholarship to Howard University. Since then, Anderson has appeared in numerous TV shows and films, including “Law & Order,” Michael Bay’s “Transformers,” “The Departed,” “Scary Movie 3,” “Me, Myself, and Irene,” “Barbershop,” “Kangaroo Jack,” “Exit Wounds,” “Cradle 2 the Grave,” “Two Can Play That Game,” and “Malibu’s Most Wanted.”

Ella Henderson (Syco, Columbia) – Nineteen-year-old U.K. breakout Ella Henderson started her journey to fame as a contestant on “The X Factor (U.K.)” in 2012.  Ella was the favorite to win the show but wound up finishing in sixth place, upon which she was immediately signed by Simon Cowell to his label Syco.  Ella now marks her arrival with debut single “Ghost,” which was co-written with One Republic’s Ryan Tedder and is already platinum in the U.K. and Australia, as well as the fastest-selling debut single in the U.K. with the second biggest radio audience of the year.  “Ghost” recently broke into the Top 10 on iTunes in the U.S. and its music video currently boasts over 44 million views on Vevo.  Ella is making her way to the forefront in the U.S. with recent performances on “Good Morning America,” “The TODAY Show,” “Dancing with the Stars,” “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” “The Voice,” and “Late Show with David Letterman.”  Ella has been dubbed an “Artist on the Verge” by Billboard Magazine and USA TODAY, and is also in the running for Billboard’s “21 Under 21” 2015 Class.  Her debut album, “Chapter One,” went straight to No. 1 on the U.K. Album Chart and debuted at No. 11 on Billboard’s Top 200 Albums chart upon release in January 2015 via Columbia Records/Syco.

About State Farm®

State Farm and its affiliates are the largest provider of car insurance in the U.S. In addition to providing auto insurance quotes, their 18,000 agents and more than 65,000 employees serve over 82 million policies and accounts – nearly 80 million auto, home, life, health and commercial policies, and nearly 2 million bank accounts. Commercial auto insurance, along with coverage for renters, business owners, boats and motorcycles, is available. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company is the parent of the State Farm family of companies. State Farm is ranked No. 41 on the 2014 Fortune 500 list of largest companies. For more information, please visit http://www.statefarm.com.

About Turner Sports

Turner Sports, a division of Turner Broadcasting System, Inc., is an industry leader in the delivery of premium sports content across all multimedia screens. Turner Sports’ television coverage includes the NBA, Major League Baseball, NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship and professional golf.  The company also manages some of the most popular sports destinations across broadband and mobile platforms including Bleacher Report and its top-rated Team Stream app, NCAA.com and the critically-acclaimed NCAA March Madness Live suite of products, PGA.com and the Sports Emmy Award-winning PGA Championship LIVE, as well as an accompanying collection of mobile sites and connected device apps.  Turner Sports and the NBA also jointly manage NBA Digital, a robust collection of offerings including NBA TV, NBA.com, NBA LEAGUE PASS, NBA Mobile, the NBA Game Time App, NBADLEAGUE.com and WNBA.com.

About HARMAN

HARMAN (www.harman.com) designs, manufactures and markets premier audio, visual, infotainment and enterprise automation solutions for the automotive, consumer and professional markets. With leading brands including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon®, Mark Levinson ® and Revel®, the Company is admired by audiophiles, musicians and the entertainment venues where they perform. More than 25 million automobiles on the road today are equipped with HARMAN audio and infotainment systems.  HARMAN has a workforce of approximately 16,600 people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia and reported sales of $5.6 billion for the 12 months ended September 30, 2014.  The Company’s shares are traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol NYSE:HAR.

About NBA All-Star 2015

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, which will take place Sunday, Feb. 15 at Madison Square Garden, 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 on Friday, Feb. 13 and State Farm All-Star Saturday Night on Saturday, Feb. 14, which will both take place at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.  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, Feb. 15, airing on NBA TV.  Madison Square Garden will host Friday night’s ESPN-televised Sprint NBA All-Star Celebrity Game.”

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