P. Diddy Dances to Victory
P. Diddy makes winning a habit. Whether it’s the music game or a basketball game, Sean "P.Diddy" Combs loves being a winner. Pre-game he boasted that he would, “Win by any means necessary” and that is exactly what his Buffalo Braves team did.
In front of a raucous crowd at the Los Angeles Convention Center the P.Diddy/Paris Hilton coached Braves squad beat the Ashton Kutcher/Lisa Leslie coached Minneapolis Lakers team, 60-52. Led by DJ Clue (14 pts., 7 steals) and Henry Simmons (8 pts, 8 boards, 2 steals) the Braves controlled the tempo and the game from start to finish. Kutcher and Leslie could not find the cure for their Laker team despite playing New Jersey Nets forward Richard Jefferson (16 pts., 11 boards, 3 steals, 3 blocks, 2 assists) a whopping 31 minutes. Also chipping in for the Lakers squad was Bill Bellamy (9 pts., 8 boards, 3 steals) and Mark McGrath (9 pts., 4 boards).
Arriving in the second quarter, Nelly gave his Braves team an instant spark and contributed 2 pts, 7 board and 2 assists.
DJ Clue praised his teams’ cohesion as the key to victory. "We had a lot of people who could score, and we were really flowing out there," Clue said. "We just concentrated on defense and didn't get too crazy with the shots. Nelly had some good passes out there, too."
Nelly also praised Assistant Coach Hilton post-game. “I think it definitely helped the team. I think that's what it was. Paris, she executed the perfect game. She sat there, and we already knew what she had in mind. We went out and executed it.”
Sounding like sour grapes from the Lakers team, Bill Bellamy held nothing back: "We didn't rebound well enough, and we lost. We didn't execute very well. Mark Jackson was fouling ... a lot. And that whole (Cuttino) Mobley substitution, that was a little suspect: They went 'pro' on us." Bellamy was referring to Mobley joining his Braves team in the second half.
Frankie Muniz sounding like he was not happy with his coaching staff’s substitution patterns or his choice of team: “I only got two shots, but that's all right," Muniz said. "I've never played with many of these players, and the coaches didn't really know what I could do, so I was kind of stuck at the end of the bench. But the biggest thing is that I was on the wrong team. The Buffalo Braves are now the Clippers, and I'm the biggest Clippers fan. I'm not a Lakers fan at all!"
Roger Lodge who has never met a shot he doesn’t like even took a jab at his own coach after his victory: “Diddy was so busy on his cell phone making deals throughout the entire game that it was difficult to get on the court," Lodge said. "But despite all that, we didn't come to lose tonight."
Among the other players in the game: Tom Cavanagh, Donald Faison, Mark Jackson, Sue Bird, Morris Chestnut, and Nick Carter for the Braves; Sean Paul, Nick Cannon, Michael Rapaport, Steve Howey, Nikki Teasley and Kevin Hart for the Lakers.
Celebrity Game Quotes
Nick Carter, Singer and member of the Backstreet Boys.
Are you excited to play tonight?
Yeah man, I am definitely excited. I am really happy to play.
Q: How are things with Paris?
Carter: Everything is really good. No problems no complaints. She is a great girl. We vibe, we have a great connection together.
Nicky Hilton, Sister of Buffalo Braves Assistant Coach, Paris Hilton.
What are you most looking forward to during AS weekend?
I am looking forward to my sister trying to coach. I think that is going to be amusing
Q: Are there any celebrities you are looking forward to meeting over the course of the weekend?
Hilton: Um no. I love the Lakers. I have met them all and they are cool. Shaq is my favorite player.
Sue Bird, WNBA All-Star point guard for the Seattle Storm
Is there anything over the course of the weekend that you are anxious to do or anyone you are anxious to meet?
I think the celebrity event is going to be the best. To out and play with a bunch of actors – they are already talking a lot of trash. I am looking forward to it and it will be a fun experience
Q: Are you going to take it easy on the actors?
Bird: (Laugh) I am just going to be a passer. I will leave it to Nikki Teasly to show the flashy stuff.
Q: Of all the other events going on, are there any you are anxious to see or anyone you are anxious to meet?
Bird: I am really anxious to see the Rookie-Sophomore event – I think it is going to be a good on. I am also looking forward to the Slam Dunk and 3-Point contest. Those are the three I want to see.
Q: Do you have any favorites?
Bird: Nah..I would have said Brent Barry, but he got hurt. He would have been my man in the 3 point contest.
Mark McGrath, Musician and lead vocalist for Sugar Ray.
Are you a Laker fan?
I am a huge Laker fan. Showtime, early 80’s, I used to have season tickets at the forum and then they banned smoking in the arena and my dad never renewed them.
Q: Who is your favorite player of all time?
McGrath: I would have to say Magic. What he embodied and what he brought to the game. His experience, his style..He is probably the most dangerous player to ever play the game in terms of comprehensive playing of basketball. There is a new statue at the Staples Center of Magic and that brings some fine memories of childhood. Magic we love you.
Q: Who are you going to take it to tonight?
McGrath: You know what I want to do? When I played in Atlanta, I got the ball and shot it as soon as I touched it from about 40 feet out. So as soon as I get the ball tonight I am going to shoot regardless where I am on the court. But I am looking forward to playing with a lot of these guys. Munoz can stick the three like no tomorrow. Bill Belamy is great. I can’t believe they still let me play