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NBA STARS LIGHT UP PHOENIX CENTER

The most anticipated exhibition basketball game this year brought in a large crowd to see NBA talent J.R. Smith and Gerald Green and Cleveland Cavaliers assistant coach Phil Handy play alongside Justice I & Justice II. The fans got a treat to see high level basketball in a playground form.

By Candy Taman

JR Smith drives towards the basket and lays one up with ease for Justice 1.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

JR Smith drives towards the basket and lays one up with ease for Justice 1. (photo by Daniel Paran)

Star talent of the NBA awed the crowd Friday night at the FD Phoenix Center and the build-up packed the house. Team Justice I and II went head to head in an exhibition match featuring NBA slam-dunk winner Gerald Green, part of Justice II, and Eastern Conference champion JR Smith alongside Coach Phil Handy with Justice I.

Justice two ran away with the win 80-59, but the display of talent was the real treat to the fans.

In front of a packed house, mixed local talent showed what Guam had to offer emphasizing the NBA presence of Green, Smith and Handy. Former slam dunk champion Green got the stands roaring early in the first with a show case of NBA style dunks from every angle of attack, even using Team Guam’s gold medalist Will Stinnett for and assists in his visually pleasing alley-oops more than once.

The game for the most part was crowd pleasing. Audience in attendance definitely got what they came for from both teams. Instead of being star-struck, the Guam boys came to play didn’t shy away from guarding the professional ballers.

Though the players featured compete at the highest level of basketball the mood was far from competitive. A seasoned Phil Handy displayed an “old-school” style of play forcing hilarious one-on-one situations, while Green and Smith showed a more exciting style.

A half time 3-point competition between the 3 visitors dawned an opportunity for local boy “Hammer” Stinnett to share the spotlight.

Second half action gave the crowd a little more to cheer for as players from both Justice teams found their comfort zone testing their skills against NBA talent.

Key moments had the crowd at hawk’s gaze in final minutes. From Stinnett flaunting his vertical to AJ Agoun defending against JR Smith, the Guam boys got to show what they had to offer. The flashy Smith called out “the Hammer” to play to the crowd on a few one-on-one situations that definitely made the night memorable one.

PHOTO GALLERY:

Coach Phil Handy thanks everyone after the game for welcoming him, Green, and Smith, since their arrival on island.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

Coach Phil Handy thanks everyone after the game for welcoming him, Green, and Smith, since their arrival on island. (photo by Daniel Paran)

Willy Stinnet of Justice 2 hypes up the crowd by going one-on-one against JR Smith.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

Willy Stinnet of Justice 2 hypes up the crowd by going one-on-one against JR Smith. (photo by Daniel Paran)

The crowd goes wild as Gerald Green soars through the air and slams the ball in.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

The crowd goes wild as Gerald Green soars through the air and slams the ball in. (photo by Daniel Paran)

Josh Wilson of Justice 1 pushes through the defense to take a shot from the inside.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

Josh Wilson of Justice 1 pushes through the defense to take a shot from the inside. (photo by Daniel Paran)

Kids gather during the half-time show for a dance-off to have a chance at winning a cash prize.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

Kids gather during the half-time show for a dance-off to have a chance at winning a cash prize. (photo by Daniel Paran)

Justice 2's James Stake fakes a shot and passes to an open man on the outside.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

Justice 2’s James Stake fakes a shot and passes to an open man on the outside. (photo by Daniel Paran)

Phil Handy showing off some of his fancy footwork to please the crowd.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

Phil Handy showing off some of his fancy footwork to please the crowd. (photo by Daniel Paran)

Gerald Green joins Justice 2 and gives high fives to both teams.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

Gerald Green joins Justice 2 and gives high fives to both teams. (photo by Daniel Paran)

JR Smith has a bit of fun on his skywalker board to move around and warm up before the match.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

JR Smith has a bit of fun on his skywalker board to move around and warm up before the match. (photo by Daniel Paran)

The Justice teams, together with Coach Phil Handy, JR Smith, and Gerald Green, gather around for a group photo.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

The Justice teams, together with Coach Phil Handy, JR Smith, and Gerald Green, gather around for a group photo. (photo by Daniel Paran)

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