WNBA at NBA All-Star 2012

Cappie Pondexter calmly knocked down the shots as Team New York eased to the Shooting Stars title

Cappie Pondexter was confident going into the Haier Shooting Stars competition on NBA All-Star Saturday night and for good reason: Team New York can shoot the ball. And shoot they did, all the way to the Shooting Stars crown, as former Knick All-Star and current Assistant GM Allan Houston, and current Knick Landry Fields teamed up with WNBA All-Star and NY Liberty point guard Pondexter to best Team Atlanta, Team Orlando and competition finalist Team Texas.

"It was pretty easy," Pondexter told TNT's Cheryl Miller, herself no stranger to the art of shooting, after hoisting up the trophy with her Madison Square Garden brethren. "We were focused."

Cappie wasn't kidding about focus as she went 4-for-4 on shots from the right side and baseline as part of the Team New York win. The other WNBA competitors also strutted their stuff on Saturday night as both Marie Ferdinand-Harris (Team Orlando) and Lindsey Harding (Team Atlanta) hit the hardest shots of the night -- the dreaded half-court shots -- for their respective squads. And Sophia Young helped Team Texas to the final round, only to fall to Cappie and the Knickerbockers.

Haier Shooting Stars 2012 | Video Recap | Photo Gallery
Cappie Pondexter and Team New York are taking aim at Steve Smith and Team Atlanta

NBA Legend Steve Smith is leaving the confines of the TNT studios to get back on the court with teammates Jerry Stackhouse of the Atlanta Hawks and Lindsey Harding of the WNBA's Atlanta Dream to defend the Haier Shooting Stars crown tonight (8:30pm ET on TNT), but Cappie Pondexter of Team New York has other ideas, which she's freely shared with Smith and WNBA.com.

"I've been talking trash with Steve Smith," the New York Liberty point guard jokingly told WNBA.com's Kevin Scheitrum on the eve of the Shooting Stars event. "Me and him been talking alot. He's been stretching since like two days ago and I told him, 'that's good for you.'"

Pondexter, who will be paired with Knicks Legend Allan Houston and current Knick Landry Fields, is so confident that New York can pull off the victory tonight that she openly shared her winning strategy.

"The key is making shots and knowing who's good at making what shots," said Pondexter. "I think I want to go second because those are the easiest shots for me. The third shot is a long distance three for me, because it's NBA range. I think I'll let Allan (Houston) or Landry (Fields) make that and then focus on making the half-court shot."

Speaking of shots, since Pondexter is part of the Madison Square Garden family, she also took a shot at her view of Linsanity.

"It's a great story. New York is the media Mecca and they thrive on things like that and Lin's a great storyline, as well as an exceptional basketball player," said New York's other point guard. "I really enjoy watching him play. I think he's a great talent and I'm looking forward to his growth process. He's only 10 games in. Of course he had a bad game the other night ... but you know, who doesn't? Who doesn't have a bad game? I think he's gonna be great for us down the stretch. His court vision is unbelievable. His attitude is always positive and he's never giving up on a play. No matter the situation, he alway's toughs it out, I really like that."
Sophia Young and Ashley Robinson divide and conquer at NBA All-Star
Washington Mystics center Ashley Robinson and Sophia Young of the San Antonio Silver Stars are both representing the WNBA at NBA All-Star 2012 this weekend but from different angles and perspectives.

Robinson is slated to appear in several events and was particularly enamored with the clicks of the cameras at the photo session. Young is prepping for the Haier Shooting Stars competition tonight (8:30pm ET on TNT) and is in awe of meeting her team leader, Kenny "The Jet" Smith. Check out the videos below:

It's probably been awhile since Tamika Catchings needed assistance from an educator, but she was happy for the help Friday night

As Tamika Catchings took the court for the East at the 2012 Sprint NBA All-Star Celebrity Game in Orlando alongside teammates Ne-Yo, Common and JB Smoove there was a good chance there'd be some clowning around. But U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan was as serious as an elementary school Vice Principal on a class trip, and when he made the smart pass to Catchings, there was no way the WNBA MVP was going to fail, as she completed the play with aplomb.

In the end, the East taught the West a lesson. Check out NBA.com's John Schuhmann for the Cliff Notes version of game.
Catching up with the WNBA players as they arrive in Orlando Thursday for NBA All-Star

All-Star Portraits Photo Gallery

WNBA players have begun to arrive in Orlando for NBA All-Star. One of the first stops that they made was the NBA Entertainment circuit, where they posed for photos and taped a number video interviews for the NBA and other media outlets.

WNBA.com caught up with Swin Cash and Ruth Riley for some quick interviews to get their thoughts on the weekend, joining the Chicago Sky as teammates and both playing in China over the past few months.

WNBA stars -- including new Sky teammates Swin Cash and Ruth Riley (pictured) -- join the NBA family in Orlando

The WNBA and its players will continue their long-standing commitment to social responsibility, community service and youth education at NBA All-Star 2012 in Orlando. WNBA stars are scheduled to take part in events, Feb. 23-26, highlighted by the Haier Shooting Stars competition as part of NBA All-Star Saturday Night presented by State Farm.

WNBA participation will tip off on Thursday, Feb. 23 with the NBA FIT All-Star Youth Celebration followed by the NBA/NWBA All-Star Wheelchair Classic, both events taking place on Center Court inside NBA All-Star Jam Session.

WNBA players participating in one or both events include Tamika Catchings and Briann January, of the Indiana Fever; Ruth Riley of the Chicago Sky; Sophia Young of the San Antonio Silver Stars; Ashley Robinson of the Washington Mystics; 10-year veteran Marie Ferdinand-Harris; and WNBA Legends Nykesha Sales and Teresa Edwards.

Fans can catch all their favorite WNBA players throughout the week at NBA All-Star Jam Session Feb. 23-26 at the Orange County Convention Center, featuring player meet-and-greets, fitness clinics and autograph sessions. Fans will be able to follow all the action online through editorial, photos and video served up on WNBA.com, Facebook, YouTube and Twitter.

The following are highlights of activities WNBA players will participate in at NBA All-Star 2012:

  • Feb. 23  NBA FIT All-Star Youth Celebration
  • Feb. 23  NWBA All-Star Wheelchair Classic
  • Feb. 24  NBA Cares Hospital Visit
  • Feb. 24  NBA Cares All-Star Day of Service
  • Feb. 24  Sprint NBA All-Star Celebrity Game
  • Feb. 25  NBA All-Star FIT Race, Walk & Dribble
  • Feb. 25  NBA FIT/WNBA FIT Dribble, Dish & Swish presented by Pepperidge Farm Flavor Blasted Goldfish crackers National Finals
  • Feb. 25  Haier Shooting Stars
  • Feb. 26  NBA Cares Special Olympics Unity Sports Basketball Game
  • Feb. 26  Special Olympics Clinic

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A quartet of WNBA players will participate in the Haier Shooting Stars competition during NBA All-Star Saturday Night

What: Haier Shooting Stars
When: Feb. 25, 8:30 p.m. ET (1st event)
Where: Amway Center
TV: All-Star Saturday Night coverage starts at 8 p.m. ET on TNT

Team Atlanta will attempt to become the first repeat Haier Shooting Stars champion as it competes against a field that includes squads representing New York, Texas and NBA All-Star 2012 host city Orlando at Amway Center on Feb. 25.

The Haier Shooting Stars contest features one current NBA player, one current WNBA player and one TNT on-air talent/NBA legend on each team.

Team Orlando
  • Jameer Nelson (Magic)
  • Marie Ferdinand-Harris (Mercury)
  • Dennis Scott (Magic legend)
  • Team Atlanta
  • TBD (Joe Johnson replacement)
  • Lindsey Harding (Dream)
  • Steve Smith (Hawks legend)

  • Team New York
  • Landry Fields (Knicks)
  • Cappie Pondexter (Liberty)
  • Allan Houston (Knicks legend)
  • Team Texas
  • Chandler Parsons (Rockets)
  • Sophia Young (Silver Stars)
  • Kenny Smith (Rockets legend)

  • Official Release | Event Page
    A year after facing off with Justin Bieber, WNBA MVP Tamika Catchings will once again participate in the Sprint NBA All-Star Celebrity Game

    What: Sprint NBA All-Star Celebrity Game
    When: Friday, Feb. 24, 7 p.m. ET
    Where: Center Court at Jam Session, Orange County Convention Center
    TV: ESPN

    The 2012 Sprint NBA All-Star Celebrity Game is a chance for luminaries from the entertainment world to mix with athletes past and present. The game this year in Orlando promises to bring out the biggest and brightest.

    This year's players include celebrities from film, TV and music and will feature Grammy Award-winner Ne-Yo; Common; JB Smoove; Vinny Guadagnino; Kevin Hart; Javier Colon; Drew and Jonathan Scott; Jesse Williams; NBA Legends Mitch Richmond, Penny Hardaway, and Nick Anderson; 2011 WNBA MVP Tamika Catchings; and Doug Gottlieb.

    2012 NBA All-Stars, Orlando Magic Center Dwight Howard and Oklahoma City Thunder Forward Kevin Durant will serve as the East and West team coaches, respectively.

    Official Release | Event Page

    WNBA Players Attending NBA All-Star

    Swin CashSky
    Tamika CatchingsFever
    Marie Ferdinand-
    Lindsey HardingDream
    Briann JanuaryFever
    Kara LawsonSun
    Cappie PondexterLiberty
    Ruth RileySky
    Ashley RobinsonMystics
    Katie SmithStorm
    Tina ThompsonSparks
    Sophia YoungSilver Stars
    Teresa EdwardsLegend
    Nykesha SalesLegend
    Lynette WoodardLegend


    2012 All-Star Schedule

    Thursday, February 23, 2012
    NBA FIT All-Star Youth Celebration
  • Catchings, Young, January, Edwards and Sales
  • NWBA All-Star Wheelchair Classic
  • Robinson and Ferdinand-Harris
  • Friday, February 24, 2012
    NBA Cares Hospital Visit
  • Smith, Sales and January
  • NBA Cares All-Star Day of Service
  • Thompson, Lawson, Sales, January and Robinson
  • Sprint NBA All-Star Celebrity Game
  • Catchings
  • Saturday, February 25, 2012
    NBA All-Star FIT Race, Walk & Dribble
  • January
  • Haier Shooting Stars
  • Ferdinand-Harris, Harding, Pondexter, Young
  • Sunday, February 26, 2012
    NBA Cares Special Olympics Unity Sports Basketball Game
  • Harding, Riley, Ferdinand-Harris and Young
  • Special Olympics Clinic
  • Harding, Riley