I stumbled upon a fun video clip last night starring Brent Musburger introducing the starting lineups for the 1975 NBA All-Star Game in Phoenix. It was the first All-Star Game I was old enough, at 6, to be somewhat aware of. And it was a big deal for a kid in Western New York because Buffalo's Bob McAdoo was the East's starting center opposite Milwaukee's Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.
That's right. The Bucks were a Western Conference team back then.
The NBA wasn't close to the national television force in the 1970s as we know it today, so every game on CBS — well into my high school years even after Magic Johnson and Larry Bird had ushered the league to a new level of prominence — always felt like a big deal.
What’s the first NBA All-Star Game you remember and why? Please join the thread and weigh in below with your recollections:
The first one I remember was the 2006 All-Star game in Houston. At that time, I was not watching the NBA full time and was just surfing channels to find something to watch and I came across this. Will never forget the dunk contest where Nate dunked over Spud Webb!
Not the game, but the 1997 Dunk Contest, when Michael Finley tried a "cartwheel." I was 7... dunks have gotten a lot more complex since then https://youtu.be/s9whTz94UFE?t=144
I covered a ton of them between 1995-2017 for ESPN and 2019-2020 for Pure Hoops Media. As a young fan I don't remember much, although the 1964 ASG in Boston was the most significant from a historical point of view with the players "revolt" that was the opening salvo in the players' quest for better money and benefits. The one that stands out for me is the 1996 game in San Antonio when future colleague and friend Tim Legler won the 3 point shootout. Legs was so elated when he won. I've never seen such pure joy on a player's face as I saw on his.
My first all-star game, I “remember” was the 1990-91 all star game. But it’s funny what you remember, though. The most indelible moment from that game is a missed Dominique Wilkins Dunk:
Of note, this was the year of Michael Jordan’s 1st championship, and also coincided with me getting into basketball with the “Little Dribblers” foundation.
But, the true first all-star game I can remember is the 1992 all-star game in Orlando, which was notable because it was Magic’s first game back out of
My dad was a Magic Johnson fan (and my basketball coach) so we both watched this game with anticipation. Was so neat to see Magic win the All Star Game MVP, but because I was so young, I didn’t truly understand the significance of why until a few years later.
I played point guard on my “Little Dribblers” team, and I asked my dad, “Do you think I will grow to be as tall and as good as Magic?”
He said, “We’ll see, Son. We’ll see…” 🤪
Though I never quite got as tall, not as good as Magic, that one stands out to me, both for its significance historically and personally, as it crystallized my love for the game!
I remember that 75 game, my favorite player Walt Frazier got the MVP. Interesting to see the 2 African American coaches, who met later that year in the Finals.
My first All-Star Game was in the ABA. It was held here in Indianapolis at Hinkle Fieldhouse. I caught a red, white, and blue basketball that was thrown into the stands at halftime. I wish I still had it and hadn't let my kids use it in the driveway. Larry Brown was the MVP.