All-Star Experience Latest Big Thing for Christon
And what a memorable – and somewhat nerve-racking - experience it was for the New York Liberty forward, who in her just sixth season has emerged as one of the top perimeter players in the league.
“It was a lot of fun,” she said. “I didn’t really know what to expect. I wasn’t nervous about playing against the players that were there because I’ve played against them before, but it was just the moment (that made me nervous) because it was my first time doing it.”
Christon didn’t play like someone who was nervous as she showcased her long-range shooting in front of a national audience. She poured in 12 points on 3-of-7 shooting from beyond the arc as her Eastern Conference squad dropped 130-118 decision to the West Saturday afternoon at Mohegan Sun Arena in Connecticut.
“I think it’s the first time that I wouldn’t get in trouble for not playing defense, just coming down and shooting the first shot,” Christon joked a day later.
Christon’s stroke was on point during the game after warming up in the WNBA All-Star Three-Point Shootout just an hour before tip-off. Although she didn’t make it past the first round of the shooting contest - posting a score of 10 points - Christon was just happy to be part of the competition, which was won by former Liberty and current Silver Stars guard Becky Hammon.
She finished in fourth place, but was still all smiles after the event.
“It’s funny because when I got (chosen to participate in the contest), I didn’t know if I could shoot fast enough for that,” she said. “But I just got up there and just shot. I’m just happy I didn’t finish last.”
Christon is in the midst of her best season so far and was voted an All-Star reserve by the league’s coaches last week. Entering Sunday’s matchup against the Phoenix Mercury, she ranked fifth in the league in scoring (18.1 ppg) and sixth in 3-point field-goal percentage (47.7).
Her success on the court, however, is nothing new to her coaches, teammates and Libs fans. This was just the first time she had been formerly recognized by the league.
“I thought she had an All-Star last year also. I think if there had been a team last year she would’ve been on it,” head coach Pat Coyle said. “I think it’s her maturity and I think it’s her being comfortable in the role that she has here in New York. And she’s gotten better. Each year she has come back better.”
“I think she’s huge (to our success),” Coyle said. “I think that she’s our best perimeter player. I think she’s been our most consistent player this year. She just comes in and does her job and does as best she can, and that’s what I really appreciate about her.”
Catch the Liberty all summer long at Madison Square Garden. Tickets, beginning at $10, are on sale now by clicking here, visiting The Garden Box Office or calling 877-WNBA-TIX.