After the disappointing news this afternoon that neither Damian Lillard or CJ McCollum were selected as reserves for the Western Conference All-Star team, some pleasant news arrives for Blazer fans this evening. C.J. McCollum, who initially indicated he would not compete in any other All-Star Weekend event if not selected for the game itself, has ultimately decided to accept an invitation from the league to compete in the annual 3-Point Shootout, as first reported by former Trail Blazer beat writer and current ESPN reporter Chris Haynes.
Portland Trail Blazers guard C.J. McCollum will participate in NBA 3-Point Contest, league sources tell ESPN. Shooting 42 percent from deep.— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) January 27, 2017
McCollum competed in the event in Toronto last year, but as a last minute fill-in for Chris Bosh (McCollum was already in Toronto to compete in the Skills Competition), but it was a poor showing for him, as he hit just 10-25 shots and was booted in the first round.
This year, McCollum will have plenty of time to mentally and physically prepare for the event. The rapid-fire nature of the contest catches many first-year participants off guard. McCollum is shooting a career-high 42.1 percent from three this season, good for 12th in the NBA among players with at least 100 attempts.
The 3-Point Shootout was established at the 1986 All-Star Weekend in Dallas. Boston Celtics legend Larry Bird won the first three contests. Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson won the event last season. No Trail Blazer has ever won the event. The Shootout will take place as part of All-Star Saturday Night on February 18th at the Smoothie King Arena in New Orleans, it will be broadcast live on TNT.