NBA All-Star Weekend will have something new, thanks to Sabrina Ionescu and Stephen Curry.
The Golden State Warriors and New York Liberty stars will face off in the first ever NBA vs. WNBA 3-point challenge, dubbed “Stephen vs. Sabrina." Curry has won the NBA's 3-point contest twice, in 2015 and 2021, while Ionescu set a record with 37 points in the final of her win in the WNBA event last year.
Here are details from the NBA:
As part of the competition, Curry’s Eat.Learn.Play. nonprofit and Ionescu’s SI20 Foundation will receive a donation from the NBA and WNBA. In addition, each shot made by Curry and Ionescu will trigger a donation from State Farm to the NBA Foundation to support economic empowerment in the Black community. Each regular 3-pointer made will be valued at $1,000, the money ball at $2,000 and the “STARRY Range Ball” – a deep 3-pointer from 29 feet, 9 inches away – at $3,000.
“Stephen vs. Sabrina” will follow standard STARRY 3-Point Contest rules. Curry will shoot from the NBA 3-point line with NBA basketballs, and Ionescu will shoot from the WNBA 3-point line with WNBA basketballs.
Curry teased the possibility last week in a segment with Warriors rookie Brandin Podziemski that totally wasn't staged at all, which happened to be captured by TNT's cameras.
— NBA on TNT (@NBAonTNT) January 26, 2024
Curry and Ionescu have been teasing this for a while. After burning down the nets at the WNBA shoot-out, Ionescu tweeted at Curry about a shootout. Curry responded days later, confirming he was interested in a contest.
WNBA stars have participated in NBA All-Star Weekend in the past, mostly in the celebrity game and the shooting stars competition. None have participated in the 3-point contest, but Ionescu will now get a chance to promote women's basketball on one of the NBA's biggest stages on Feb. 17 after the slam dunk competition.
NBA All-Star Weekend is scheduled from Feb. 16-18 in Indianapolis. The starters for the game were announced last week, with Curry coming short of a ninth career start. The Curry-Ionescu contest won't be the only tweak in the weekend's format, as the game is also going back to its old East-West format rather than selected teams.