The NBA Skills Challenge at All-Star Weekend was essentially the Tony Parker show during his long tenure with the San Antonio Spurs.
When the NBA first introduced the Skills Challenge to their All-Star Weekend lineup, San Antonio Spurs point guard Tony Parker was an obvious choice to be one of the original participants.
Jason Kidd would take home the first Skills Challenge trophy, which fueled Parker’s fire to participate in the contest again in 2009 where he faced off a much less talented field that included Devin Harris, Jameer Nelson, Derrick Rose, and Mo Williams.
Unfortunately, Parker fell short again as D-Rose came out the champion.
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Every single player in the 2012 Skills Challenge field had made at least three All-Star games in their respective careers, and they had a combined 38 All-Star appearances among them. However, Parker was clearly the cream of the crop that night as he finished the Skills Challenge course in 32.8 seconds.
The 2012 Skills Challenge was definitely not the highlight of Parker’s Spurs career where he was named to four All-NBA teams, won four championships, was named Finals MVP, and made six All-Star games. But the Spurs’ operations staff thought it was noteworthy enough to include in his tribute video when he returned to San Antonio as a Charlotte Hornet earlier this year.
The skilled Frenchman attempted to defend his title in 2013, but he was defeated by Damian Lillard in what would be Parker’s final Skills Challenge.
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You didn’t have to watch the 2012 Skills Challenge to know that Parker was one of the most versatile point guards to ever play the game, but having that trophy on his mantle adds a nice touch to his storied career.