There were some major changes announced by the NBA pertaining to the All-Star format this year. Apparently every quarter would be a mini-game for charity and the final quarter would be untimed with a target score that will decide which team wins. Scores will be reset — back to 0-0 — at the start of the second and third quarters, then restored to begin the fourth quarter.
In addition to All-Star format changes, The NBA plans to honor Kobe Bryant by incorporating the No. 24 jersey he wore for the last decade of his illustrious NBA career into the scoring format of the game. The team that wins the All-Star Game will be the first to reach a target score, determined by the total points the team in the lead scored in the first three quarters combined — plus 24, to show respect to Bryant.
The NBA stated that there will be a multitude of tributes to Bryant, his 13 year old daughter, Gianna, and the seven other people who tragically lost their lives in Sunday’s helicopter crash throughout All-Star weekend, including the showcase game on Feb. 16.
“We spent a lot of time considering the right target number to use for the fourth quarter,” said Byron Spruell, the NBA’s president for league operations. “Through the events of this week it became clear to us that the only appropriate number for this season’s All-Star game is 24.”
The target scoring format would be the latest addition that the NBA has made in order to make the game more competitive.