Rising Stars Challenge bringing young talent


Elliot Kaufman ’19 and Ben Stein ’18

The BBVA Rising Stars Challenge exposes the future of the NBA. It displays many young players from all around the league to show what new talent, and who we may see as an All Star in later years.Therefore, it is the most crucial event to focus on during All-Star Weekend.

This year’s Rising Stars Challenge featured many new players such as the Lakers’ D’angelo Russell, the Suns’ Devin Booker and the 76ers’ Jahlil Okafor. It also included players from foreign countries who are in the NBA such as the Knicks’ Kristaps Porzingis and the Nuggets’ Nikola Jokic.

This event has been particularly interesting because some of the past participants are currently NBA All Stars and leading their respective teams to glory.

In 2013 Kyrie Irving, Klay Thompson, and Kawhi Leonard played in the Rising Stars game, they went on to play in the 2017 All Star Game. The Cavs’ irving is averaging 24.4 ppg, 5.9 apg, and 3.1 rpg during this 2016-17 season as Cleveland is in 1st place in the Eastern Conference at 39-16 (Espn). Thompson on the Warriors is averaging 22.1 ppg, 2.0 apg and 3.8 rpg, and Golden State is in 1st place in the Western Conference with a record of 47-9. Meanwhile, Leonard of the San Antonio Spurs who are in second with a record of 43-13 is averaging 25.9 ppg, 3.3 apg, and 5.9 rpg (ESPN).  

Clearly, many of these college superstars have progressed into young contributors in the NBA. The Rising Stars Challenge shows off these players and their unrecognized talent to the people who watch, and is a sign of who will soon be the NBA All-Stars, and after that the legends.