Orlando Magic rookie Victor Oladipo had a solid outing in the 2014 Rising Stars Challenge, but his Team Webber fell to Team Hill by a 142-136 final. Detroit Pistons center Andre Drummond of Team Hill earned game MVP honors as he tallied 30 points and a Rising Stars Challenge-record 25 rebounds in 28 minutes. Unfortunately, the trophy fell apart during the post-game ceremony.
Cleveland Cavaliers guard Dion Waiters of Team Hill and New York Knicks guard Tim Hardaway Jr. of Team Hill engaged in a great one-on-one duel in the second half, trading deep threes off the dribble early in the shot clock much to the delight of their teammates and the crowd at Smoothie King Center. Waiters scored 31 points in 21 minutes while Hardaway posted 36 of his own, with seven three-pointers, in 24 minutes.
Oladipo finished the exhibition with 13 points, one rebound, and four assists on 6-of-11 shooting in 20 minutes. The league's fans voted him into Team Webber's starting five alongside Philadelphia 76ers point guard Michael Carter-Williams; Boston Celtics centers Jared Sullinger and Kelly Olynyk; and New Orleans Pelicans center Anthony Davis.
Team Hill general manager Grant Hill expressed regret for not choosing Oladipo to his team. "He plays hard, he's athletic, and he excels in the open court," Hill said on TNT's broadcast. Hill had seven opportunities to pick the Indiana product, but passed on him each time, allowing Team Webber general manager Chris Webber to nab him with the final pick in the Rising Stars Challenge Draft.
Oladipo scored in bunches, sinking a pull-up two-pointer, a fast-break dunk, and a driving layup within a 72-second span in the first half. Moments later, he fed Davis for two dunks, including one spectacular alley-oop.
He reached double-figures in the second half after blowing by Portland Trail Blazers point guard Damian Lillard--who was standing almost completely straight up and not at all in a defensive stance--and swooping in for a layup.
Oladipo checked out of the game for good with 12:30 remaining in the second half. He needs the rest: he's slated to take part in the Skills Challenge during All-Star Saturday Night.