NBA All-Star Weekend Skills Challenge

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Skills Challenge Competition 2016 Toronto

The NBA Skills Challenge (officially named The Taco Bell Skills Challenge), is a National Basketball Association (NBA) contest held on the Saturday before the annual All-Star Game as part of the All-Star Weekend. First held in 2003, it is a competition to test ball-handling, passing and shooting ability. In the current version of the contest, two participants race against each other on identical courses by first dribbling between five obstacles while running down the court. Next, the player must throw a pass into an upright hoop. Then, the players must dribble back the full length of the court for a lay up. Shortly after, the players must dribble back down the court and hit a three pointer from the top of the basketball key. The match ends when the first player hits the three pointer. Currently, the champion is decided via a single elimination tournament format, with a guard and a frontcourt player guaranteed to face off in the final round.

The current champion is Jayson Tatum of the Boston Celtics.


Steve Nash (left), Dwyane Wade (center), and Damian Lillard (right) share the record for most titles won (2).
dagger Denotes players who are still active
Player(s) (#) Denotes the number of times the player has won
Team(s) (#) Denotes the number of times a player from this team has won
Season Player(s) Team(s) Time
2002–03 United States Jason Kidd New Jersey Nets 35.1 seconds
2003–04 United States Baron Davis New Orleans Hornets 31.6 seconds
2004–05 Canada Steve Nash Phoenix Suns 25.8 seconds
2005–06 United States Dwyane Wade Miami Heat 26.1 seconds
2006–07 United States Dwyane Wade (2) Miami Heat (2) 26.4 seconds
2007–08 United States Deron Williams Utah Jazz 25.5 seconds[a]
2008–09 United States Derrick Rose Chicago Bulls 35.3 seconds
2009–10 Canada Steve Nash (2) Phoenix Suns (2) 29.9 seconds
2010–11 United States Stephen Curry Golden State Warriors 28.2 seconds
2011–12 France Tony Parker San Antonio Spurs 32.8 seconds
2012–13 United States Damian Lillard Portland Trail Blazers 29.8 seconds
2013–14 United States Damian Lillard (2)
United States Trey Burke
Portland Trail Blazers (2)
Utah Jazz (2)
45.2 seconds
2014–15 United States Patrick Beverley Houston Rockets
2015–16 Dominican Republic Karl-Anthony Towns Minnesota Timberwolves
2016–17 Latvia Kristaps Porziņģis New York Knicks
2017–18 United States Spencer Dinwiddie Brooklyn Nets (2)
2018–19 United States Jayson Tatum Boston Celtics

All-time participants[edit]

(in bold text)
Indicates the winner of the contest
Player (#) Denotes the number of times the player has been in the contest
Year Players
2003 Jason Kidd, Stephon Marbury, Tony Parker, Gary Payton
2004 Earl Boykins, Baron Davis, Derek Fisher, Stephon Marbury (2)
2005 Gilbert Arenas, Earl Boykins (2), Steve Nash, Luke Ridnour
2006 LeBron James, Steve Nash (2), Chris Paul, Dwyane Wade
2007 Kobe Bryant, LeBron James (2), Chris Paul (2), Dwyane Wade (2)
2008 Jason Kidd (2), Chris Paul (3), Dwyane Wade (3), Deron Williams
2009 Devin Harris, Jameer Nelson[b], Tony Parker (2), Derrick Rose, Mo Williams
2010 Brandon Jennings, Steve Nash (3), Derrick Rose[c], Deron Williams (2), Russell Westbrook
2011 Stephen Curry, Chris Paul (4), Derrick Rose (2), John Wall, Russell Westbrook (2)
2012 Stephen Curry[d] (2), Kyrie Irving, Tony Parker (3), Rajon Rondo, John Wall (2), Russell Westbrook (3), Deron Williams (3)
2013 Jrue Holiday, Brandon Knight, Damian Lillard, Jeremy Lin, Tony Parker (4), Jeff Teague
2014 DeMar DeRozan/Giannis Antetokounmpo, Michael Carter-Williams/Victor Oladipo, Reggie Jackson/Goran Dragić, Damian Lillard (2)/Trey Burke[e]
2015 ((Isaiah Thomas vs. John Wall (3)[f], Patrick Beverley), (Michael Carter-Williams (2)[g], Robert Covington[g], Elfrid Payton vs. Jeff Teague (2))) vs. ((Trey Burke (2) vs. Brandon Knight (2)), (Jimmy Butler[h], Dennis Schröder vs. Kyle Lowry[i]))
2016 ((Jordan Clarkson vs. C. J. McCollum), (Isaiah Thomas (2) vs. Patrick Beverley (2)[j], Emmanuel Mudiay)) vs. ((Draymond Green vs. Karl-Anthony Towns), (DeMarcus Cousins vs. Anthony Davis))
2017 ((Gordon Hayward vs. John Wall (4)), (Devin Booker vs. Isaiah Thomas (3))) vs. ((DeMarcus Cousins (2) vs. Kristaps Porziņģis), (Joel Embiid[k], Nikola Jokić vs. Anthony Davis (2)))
2018 ((Al Horford vs. Joel Embiid (2)), (Kristaps Porziņģis (2)[l], Andre Drummond vs. Lauri Markkanen)) vs. ((Spencer Dinwiddie vs. Donovan Mitchell[m], Buddy Hield), (Jamal Murray vs. Lou Williams))
2019 ((Nikola Jokić (2) vs. Nikola Vučević), (Mike Conley Jr. vs. Jayson Tatum)) vs. ((De'Aaron Fox vs. Trae Young), (Luka Dončić vs. Kyle Kuzma))
  • a The time is the all-time event record.[1]
  • b Jameer Nelson was injured and was replaced by Mo Williams.
  • c Derrick Rose was injured and was replaced by Russell Westbrook.
  • d Stephen Curry was injured and was replaced by Rajon Rondo.
  • e For the 2013–14 season, the NBA All-Star Weekend Skills Challenge was revamped to have 4 teams of two players compete to a two-round time relay-style course.
  • f John Wall was replaced by Patrick Beverley due to resting purposes.
  • g Michael Carter-Williams was replaced with his teammate Robert Covington due to injuries. Covington would be replaced by Elfrid Payton due to resting purposes.
  • h Jimmy Butler was replaced by Dennis Schröder due to a shoulder injury.
  • i Starting with the 2014–15 season, the NBA All-Star Weekend Skills Challenge was revamped to a best of 8 tournament where after 8 players competed in the first round, only 4 would go to the semi-final round and 2 would participate in the championship round.
  • j Defending champion Patrick Beverley would be replaced by rookie Emmanuel Mudiay due to an ankle injury.
  • k Joel Embiid was replaced by Nikola Jokić due to a knee injury.
  • l Kristaps Porziņģis was replaced by Andre Drummond due to a torn ACL injury.
  • m Donovan Mitchell was replaced by Buddy Hield after Mitchell replaced Aaron Gordon for the Slam Dunk Contest.

Tournament Bracket (2015–present)[edit]

Starting with the 2015 edition of the Skills Challenge, a tournament format was adopted.

Quarterfinals Semifinals Finals
Isaiah Thomas (Phoenix) X
Patrick Beverley (Houston) O
Patrick Beverley (Houston) O
Jeff Teague (Atlanta) X
Jeff Teague (Atlanta) O
Elfrid Payton (Orlando) X
Patrick Beverley (Houston) O
Brandon Knight (Milwaukee) X
Trey Burke (Utah) X
Brandon Knight (Milwaukee) O
Brandon Knight Milwaukee) O
Kyle Lowry (Toronto) X
Kyle Lowry (Toronto) O
Dennis Schröder (Atlanta) X
Quarterfinals Semifinals Finals
C. J. McCollum (Portland) O
Jordan Clarkson (L.A. Lakers) X
C. J. McCollum (Portland) X
Isaiah Thomas (Boston) O
Isaiah Thomas (Boston) O
Emmanuel Mudiay (Denver) X
Isaiah Thomas (Boston) X
Karl-Anthony Towns (Minnesota) O
Draymond Green (Golden State) X
Karl-Anthony Towns (Minnesota) O
Karl-Anthony Towns (Minnesota) O
DeMarcus Cousins (Sacramento) X
DeMarcus Cousins (Sacramento) O
Anthony Davis (New Orleans) X
Quarterfinals Semifinals Finals
John Wall (Washington) X
Gordon Hayward (Utah) O
Gordon Hayward (Utah) O
Isaiah Thomas (Boston) X
Isaiah Thomas (Boston) O
Devin Booker (Phoenix) X
Gordon Hayward (Utah) X
Kristaps Porziņģis (New York) O
DeMarcus Cousins (Sacramento) X
Kristaps Porziņģis (New York) O
Kristaps Porziņģis (New York) O
Nikola Jokić (Denver) X
Anthony Davis (New Orleans) X
Nikola Jokić (Denver) O
Quarterfinals Semifinals Finals
Spencer Dinwiddie (Brooklyn) O
Buddy Hield (Sacramento) X
Spencer Dinwiddie (Brooklyn) O
Jamal Murray (Denver) X
Jamal Murray (Denver) O
Lou Williams (LA Clippers) X
Spencer Dinwiddie (Brooklyn) O
Lauri Markkanen (Chicago) X
Al Horford (Boston) X
Joel Embiid (Philadelphia) O
Joel Embiid (Philadelphia) X
Lauri Markkanen (Chicago) O
Lauri Markkanen (Chicago) O
Andre Drummond (Detroit) X
Quarterfinals Semifinals Finals
Nikola Jokić (Denver) O
Nikola Vučević (Orlando) X
Nikola Jokić (Denver) X
Jayson Tatum (Boston) O
Mike Conley Jr. (Memphis) X
Jayson Tatum (Boston) O
Jayson Tatum (Boston) O
Trae Young (Atlanta) X
De'Aaron Fox (Sacramento) X
Trae Young (Atlanta) O
Trae Young (Atlanta) O
Luka Dončić (Dallas) X
Luka Dončić (Dallas) O
Kyle Kuzma (LA Lakers) X


"Davis, Cousins give Taco Bell Skills Challenge new look". February 4, 2016. Retrieved February 13, 2016.

External links[edit]