James Jones will get a chance to defend his 3-point contest crown during the NBA All-Star Weekend, and he will face a familiar foe: Miami Heat PG Mario Chalmers.
The pair received two of the six spots in the annual contest, along with Atlanta's Joe Johnson, Minnesota's Kevin Love, Orlando's Ryan Anderson and New Jersey's Anthony Morrow. Competitors must sink as many three-pointers as possible in 25 attempts spaced over five locations on the floor. The contest lasts two rounds, with three competitors advancing to the final round.
Jones is looking to become the sixth two-time champion in contest history, while Chalmers will try to become the fifth member of the Heat to win the contest. The other four are Jones, Jason Kapono, Glen Rice and Daequan Cook.
Chalmers has seen his 3-point percentage skyrocket to a career high this season. He is shooting 46 percent from downtown on 123 attempts, by far the most attempts on the team. He is sixth in the NBA in 3-point percentage, and tops among contestants.
Meantime, Jones has struggled to see much playing time (only back-of-bench emergency players like Mickell Gladness and Terrel Harris have fewer minutes). He is shooting 40 percent from behind the arc, third-best on the team behind Chalmers and Mike Miller and right in line with his career average. He trails Chalmers, Morrow (42 percent) and Anderson (42 percent) in 3-point percentage.
The Heat have a chance to dominate All-Star Weekend, with a third of the contestants in the 3-point contest and the entirety of the Big Three in the All-Star Game. It is quite possible that Miami could feature both the 3-Point champion and All-Star Game MVP by the end of the weekend.
If LeBron James were to enter the slam dunk contest (earlier this month he said he was considering it), the Heat could pull off a trifecta.
The 3-point contest will take place on Saturday, Feb. 25. Coverage begins at 8 p.m. on TNT.