durant608.jpg
Kevin Durant and The Sophomores won the 2009 Challenge.
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Rookies look to break through in T-Mobile Rookie Challenge


Posted Feb 4 2010 10:59AM

Will this be the year the Rookies break through in the T-Mobile Rookie Challenge? The Sophomores have won seven in a row over the first-year players, but the rookies may have the firepower with a talented crop of young guards.

2010 Competitors: Complete roster | Analysis| Morrow in for Rose | Bosh, Durant on coaching staffs
What:
T-Mobile Rookie Challenge & Youth Jam
When: Friday, Feb. 12, 9 p.m. ET
Where: American Airlines Center
TV: TNT

Rookie Team roster
Player (Team) Position Height/Weight School/Country
Omri Casspi (Kings) F 6-9/225 Israel
DeJuan Blair (Spurs) F-C 6-7/265 Pittsburgh
Stephen Curry (Warriors) G 6-3/185 Davidson
Tyreke Evans (Kings) G 6-6/220 Memphis
Jonny Flynn (Timberwolves) G 6-0/186 Syracuse
Taj Gibson (Bulls) F 6-9/225 USC
James Harden (Thunder) G 6-5/220 Arizona State
Brandon Jennings (Bucks) G 6-1/169 Lottomatica Virtus Roma (Italy)
Jonas Jerebko (Pistons) F 6-10/231 Sweden
Head Coach - TBD
Assistant Coach TBD
Sophomore Team roster
Player (Team) Position Height/Weight School/Country
Michael Beasley (Heat) F 6-9/245 Kansas State
Marc Gasol (Grizzlies) C 7-1/265 Spain
Danilo Gallinari (Knicks) G-F 6-10/225 Italy
Eric Gordon (Clippers) G 6-3/222 Indiana
Brook Lopez (Nets) C 7-0/260 Stanford
Kevin Love (Timberwolves) F-C 6-10/260 UCLA
O.J. Mayo (Grizzlies) G 6-4/210 USC
Anthony Morrow (Warriors) G 6-3/190 Georgia Tech
Russell Westbrook (Thunder) G 6-5/210 UCLA
Head Coach TBD
Assistant Coach TBD
2010 T-Mobile Rookie Challenge & Youth Jam Rules

Nine first year players (Rookies) and nine second year players (Sophomores) will be selected to participate.

Coaches for the Rookie Challenge teams will be chosen from the assistant coaches of the All-Star teams.

• Two twenty minute halves will be played.

• Each team will have one full timeout per half. However, two mandatory team timeouts for TV will be called each half (under the 10:00 and 5:00 marks). Teams will lose their full timeout if they do not call it before the 10:00 and 5:00 marks (under 10 charged to Rookies, under 5 charged to Sophomores).

• There will also be one mandatory TV timeout (charged to officials) at the under 15:00 mark in each half.

• Each team will also have one :20 second timeout per half.

• Individual fouls will be kept, but a player will not foul out.

• The penalty will apply after ten team fouls or after the second foul in the final two minutes of each half.

• The clock will stop after each successful field goal in the last minute of each half.

• In the event of a tie game at the end of regulation, a 2-minute overtime period will be played.

• The Sophomores will be considered the "home" team.

• An MVP award will be given out at the conclusion of the game.

History

2009: Durant keeps Sophomore streak alive

Kevin Durant scored a Rookie Challenge record 46 points on 17-for-25 shooting and was named MVP as he almost single-handedly sent the Sophomores to a 122-116 win at the U.S. Airways Center.

Previous T-Mobile Rookie Challenge Results
Year Result
1994 Phenoms 74, Sensations 68
1995 White 83, Green 79 (OT)
1996 East 94, West 92
1997 East 96, West 91
1998 East 85, West 80
2000 Rookies 92, Sophomores 81 (OT)
2001 Sophomores 121, Rookies 113
2002 Rookies 103, Sophomores 97
2003 Sophomores 132, Rookies 112
2004 Sophomores 142, Rookies 118
2005 Sophomores 133, Rookies 106
2006 Sophomores 106, Rookies 96
2007 Sophomores 155, Rookies 114
2008 Sophomores 136, Rookies 109
2009 Sophomores 122, Rookies 116

"I play with the guy, I see him do it every night," said Jeff Green. "He's a tremendous player."

He scored easily on everything from drives, to dunks, to catch-and-shoots off of curl screens to an array of three-pointers from every angle beyond the arc.

Even though Durant wore flashy neon orange sneakers during the game, he was nothing but humble afterward saying how much it meant to him to set the record with his parents and grandmother in the stands.

"I had a blast," Durant said. "I'm just happy I'm here and I'm glad I won MVP ... to have Jeff [Green] and Russell [Westbrook] there to watch me hoist the trophy felt great. It shines a lot of light on the organization."

2008: Gibson's triples lifts Sophomores

Sophomore sharpshooter Daniel Gibson gave the Rookies 11 good reasons why experience pays off. The Cavs' combo guard nailed a record 11 3-pointers in his 20 attempts and scored 33 points as the Sophomores beat the Rookies 136-109 in the 2008 T-Mobile Rookie Challenge & Youth Jam at New Orleans Arena. The Sophmores' victory was their sixth straight over the Rookies.

2007: Lee perfect in Sophomore win

David Lee hit all 14 of his field-goal attempts for a game-high 30 points as the Sophomore beat the Rookies for the fifth consecutive year, 155-114. Lee, who added 11 rebounds and four assists, took home MVP of the 2007 T-Mobile Rookie Challenge & Youth Jam. Chris Paul notched rookie-game records of 17 assists and nine steals to go with 16 points. Rudy Gay and Paul Millsap paced the Rookie squad with 22 points apiece.

2006: Iguodala emerges as Sophs roll

Philadelphia's Andre Iguodala notched 24 of his game-high 30 points in the second half as the Sophomores topped the Rookies 106-96 in the 2006 T-Mobile Rookie Challenge in Houston. Iguodala, the game's Most Valuable Player, made 13-of-17 from the field and added six rebounds, four steals and three assists.

2005: Carmelo carries Sophomores

On his way to MVP honors, hometown favorite Carmelo Anthony scored 19 of his game-high 31 points in the second half to power the Sophomores to a 133-106 win over the Rookies.

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