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Christina Tapper

NBA All-Star Weekend: Five Things To Watch 0

  • Hoophead
  • Posted by: Christina Tapper
  • February 14, 2014, 2:39 PM

nba all-star game

The biggest stars in basketball are headed to New Orleans for the NBA All-Star Game. The game will be played on Sunday at Smoothie King Center, the home of the Pelicans — but the festivities start today The Celebrity All-Star Game and Rising Stars Challenge kick things off, followed by the Skills Challenge, Three-Point Contest, and the Slam Dunk contest on Saturday night.

There’s a lot on the schedule, and some of the biggest events have been updated this season. So let Sports Illustrated Kids be your guide. Here’s what you need to know to get the most out of an action-packed weekend!
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Reebok Goes Wild With New Shaq Attaq 0

  • GearHead
  • Posted by: Dante A. Ciampaglia
  • February 14, 2014, 12:58 PM

shaq attaq lsu colorway

The first Shaq Attaq shoe hit the court in 1992, the same year the legendary big man made his NBA debut. Reebok Classic brought the sneaker back last year, and today the company releases a purple-and-yellow colorway.

This newest Attaq celebrates Shaq's days as an Louisiana State University Tiger — just in time for the NBA All-Star Game in New Orleans. The shoe has everything Shaq Attaq fans expect (a chunky hightop with iconic designs, including the all-important Pump), but the LSU-inspired edition gets wild with a purple and yellow tiger stripes on the back of the shoe and a wildlife print stamped on the body.

Here's a closer look at the sneaker. And be sure to check out the funny clip of Shaq dancing — or trying to, anyway — while dressed up as the world's biggest barber.
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Christina Tapper

SI Kids Hands Out Some Mid-Season NBA Awards 2

  • Hoophead
  • Posted by: Christina Tapper
  • February 13, 2014, 2:49 PM

We’re more than half way through the 2013-14 NBA season, and boy has it been electrifying and full of surprises. We’ve watched Kevin Durant single-handedly take over games with his hot hand, witnessed the Trail Blazers catch elite teams off guard to tally wins, while Roy Hibbert’s tightfisted defense has made the Pacers the best team in the league. With the start of the All-Star break, it’s only right to acknowledge a few individuals whose dominant performances and leadership have made the first half of this season incredible.

kevin durant oklahoma city thunder

Most Valuable Player
Kevin Durant, Oklahoma City Thunder

Durant, the league’s agile leading scorer (31.2 points per game), can catch and shoot while being double teamed and still knock down clutch shots. And he has carried the Thunder on his back since Russell Westbrook was sidelined in November. Durant scored 41 or more points five times — I repeat, five times! — in January and put up at least 30 points in 12 straight games. Oh, and he’s grabbing boards too, recording nine double-double this season. On defense, he’s got a solid 75 total steals this season. The numbers don’t lie: Durant is the best.
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First Look: MLB14 The Show 0

  • Sports Gamer
  • Posted by: Dante A. Ciampaglia
  • February 13, 2014, 11:48 AM

mlb14 the show pedroia screenshot

If you're a baseball gamer, circle April 1 on your calendars: That's Opening Day for MLB14 The Show. The title rolls out on PS3 and Vita first, followed by PS4 in May.

The title features enhanced gameplay and graphics (the stadiums are more photorealistic than ever thanks to a big boost in processing power and design), as well as enhancements to the title's play modes. Quick Counts, one of the new features, lets you to play a a full game in half the time by using statistically-generated pitch counts. Another cool development is Year-to-Year Saves, which allows you to move your saves and franchise data from MLB14 to future releases.

Check out a few screenshots from the game, as well as a trailer that shows off how the game looks and feels on a PS3:
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Olympic Men's Hockey 2014: Three to Watch 0

  • Posted by: Dante A. Ciampaglia
  • February 12, 2014, 7:26 PM

2014 winter olympics sochi sweden russian finland

The 2014 Olympic men's hockey tournament starts today, and all eyes will be on Canada and the US. Canada is looking to defend its 2010 gold medal, while the Americans want to bring home their first hockey gold since 1980 — and avenge a tough overtime loss to the Canadians four years ago.

But there are more than those two teams playing for the gold medal. Ten other countries want to skate out of Sochi as world champions. And while not every team has an equal shot at glory, there are a few nations who could find themselves on the medal podium.

Here are three teams to watch — not wearing a maple leaf or the stars and stripes and their sweaters — as the 2014 tournament gets underway.
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Derek Jeter Announces Retirement 1

  • Dugout Dispatch
  • Posted by: Dante A. Ciampaglia
  • February 12, 2014, 3:50 PM

derek jeter retirement announcement

One of baseball's all-time greats has decided it's time to call it a career. Earlier today, New York Yankees legend Derek Jeter announced that he will retire at the end of the 2014 season.

"From the time I was a kid, my dream was always very vivid and it never changed: I was going to be the shortstop for the NY Yankees," the 39-year-old Jeter said in an announcement posted on his Facebook page. "Now it is time for the next chapter.
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The View from the Sled During an Olympic Luge Run 0

  • Posted by: Dante A. Ciampaglia
  • February 12, 2014, 11:49 AM

2014 winter olympics sochi luge matthew mortensen

Luge is one of the most intense events at the Winter Olympics. A rider (or two, if it's a doubles team) lies flat on a light, aerodynamic sled, then propels themselves down a fast, treacherous track, reaching speeds as high as 90 miles per hour. And the only protection lugers have is a helmet.

Watching a luge run on TV can be exciting, but it doesn't compare to seeing it from the point of view of a a rider going down the track. And thanks to US luge doubles Olympian (and Army sergeant) Matthew Mortensen, we can have that experience from the safety of our computers. Mortensen attached a GoPro camera to his helmet during a practice run in Sochi, and the result is pretty intense.
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