Beginning Feb. 12, the NBA season will hit its annual All-Star break, which many would say is one of the most fun weekends of the year in all of professional sports. Emanating from Toronto for this year’s offering, the 2016 NBA All-Star weekend is shaping up to be one of the most monumental in the history of the event.
Of course, it all commences on Friday night with the NBA All-Star Celebrity Game, in which former NBA players, along with active or retired WNBA players, are mixed with the likes of actors, musicians, athletes from other sports and other pop-culture icons in an entertaining exhibition contest. This particular bout typically offers the best value on tickets, due to the star power involved, and that appears to be the case once again for this year, as the average ticket price is currently $276.05, according to TiqIQ. Additionally, the get-in price is only $108.
That encounter is followed up by the NBA All-Star Rising Stars Challenge, which is another exhibition game, though this one is comprised exclusively of NBA players. It features only first- and second-year players, and while it used to play out as a “Rookies vs. Sophomores” matchup, these days sees the event take place as a “USA vs. World” affair. The average ticket price for this showing is $155.06, with a get-in price of only $56, potentially making it the best value of all 2016 NBA All-Star events.
One night later, it’s probably the most exciting night of the weekend, as NBA All-Star Saturday Night kicks off with a variety of events. It begins with a couple of appetizers, that being the Skills Challenge and Shooting Stars Competition, but the main action doesn’t begin until shortly after, when the Three-Point Shootout takes place. In this year’s showdown, reigning league MVP Stephen Curry — not to mention arguably the greatest outside shooter in the history of the league — will look to defend his title that he won last year, but will have some stiff competition in trying to do so. Among the competitors include his teammate Klay Thompson, J.J. Redick and James Harden.
Then, of course, it’s time for the main event, the Slam Dunk Contest, which has featured some pretty amazing moments over the years. In the 2016 extravaganza, up-and-coming guard Zach LaVine will try to make it two victories in a row after an outstanding performance just a year ago. He faces some unique competitors, including All-Star big man Andre Drummond, Will Barton and Aaron Gordon. NBA All-Star Saturday Night unsurprisingly is in high demand, as tickets are going for a $1,399.03 average on the secondary market, while the lowest ticket is as high as $389, according to TiqIQ.
It all leads into Sunday, when the 65th NBA All-Star Game will be held at the Air Canada Centre for the very first time. The best players from both conferences will compete against one another, as always, in what is usually a very high-scoring and entertaining matchup. As expected, tickets are most expensive for this game compared to any other All-Star event, with the average ticket price being $2,677.95. Furthermore, the get-in price clocks in at $599.
While some of the All-Star Weekend activities can be pricey, Hipmunk at least allows fans to save significant money on their traveling if they plan on attending from a distance away. For instance, they have cheap Toronto flights from most major airline carriers that can be booked with ease. Not only that, Hipmunk also sports affordable Toronto hotel rooms, starting as low as $67.
Without question, All-Star Weekend is one of the most anticipated periods of the NBA calendar year. Set to take place in a lively venue for the first time in front of Canada’s raucous “We The North” fanbase, there should be no doubts that this year’s festivities live up to the hype. And of course, the stars will be out and about for each activity, as is always the case.