In front of an energetic crowd of more than 10,000 fans, including music, sports and entertainment icons, BIG3 took the STAPLES Center by storm on Sunday, pulling out all of the stops to close out the professional 3-on-3 league’s regular season. Fans have become accustomed to seeing hard-nosed, competitive basketball. In LA, they also witnessed their favorite stars flocking to see the games in person. Seated courtside alongside BIG3 co-founder Ice Cube were Oscar De La Hoya, Dwyane Wade, Chad Ochocinco Johnson, LL Cool J, Jeanie Buss, Jesse Williams, Snoop Dogg, Chris Brown, Lamar Odom, T-Pain, Kenny Smith, Martin Lawrence, Jeffrey Osborne, Raphael Sadaaq, Pooch Hall, Gilbert Arenas, Sam Cassall, LaVar Ball, LaMelo Balland others.
With a host of playoff scenarios set to be sorted out and Trilogy’s perfect season on the line, fans witnessed another aggressive, action-packed day of basketball resulting in Triolgy, 3 Headed Monsters, Power, and Ghost Ballers moving on to the playoffs to compete for the first-ever BIG3 championship title. Rashard Lewis ended the regular season as the scoring leader in total points (170) and points per game (21.3). Reggie Evans led the league in total rebounds (87) and rebounds per game (12.4). Mike Bibby topped the league in total assists (30), assists per game (3.8), and 4-point field goals (6).
In the most thrilling game of the day, Trilogy’s unblemished record was put on the line in a matchup against the Killer 3’s. Having already been eliminated from championship contention, Chauncey Billups and Stephen Jackson’s Killer 3’s unleashed Player Coach Charles Oakley for his season debut as a player in a final effort to tarnish Trilogy’s undefeated record. However, Trilogy’s Rashad McCants and Al Harrington proved to be unstoppable yet again, with McCants scoring 17 points and Harrington adding 16, leading their team to a 50-41 win to close out the regular season with a perfect 8-0 record.
Each of the three other games featured playoff ramifications, as Tri-State beat Power to keep their championship dreams alive. Even with a loss, Power still secured the 3-seed via 3’s Company loss and subsequent elimination at the hands of Ball Hogs which came into the week with the worst record in the league only to ruin 3’s Company’s post-season hopes. In a major upset with their fate in their own hands, Ghost Ballers (previously 3-4) wrapped up the day of reckoning by securing the 4-seed after beating 3 Headed Monsters (previously 6-1).
In addition to four competitive games, fans were treated to a halftime performance by West Coast legend Snoop Dogg, rapping his classic songs, “Next Episode” and “Drop It Like It’s Hot.” While fans attended in order to see their favorite professional basketball players compete, anticipation was at an all-time high for the much talked about 4-point challenge between Ice Cube and Big Baller Brand’s LaVar Ball. Following a week of back and forth social media conversation, Ice Cube beat Ball after draining more 4 point shots.
Official attendance was 10,288. BIG3 Week 8 games will air on Fox Sports 1 Monday Night Basketball at 5pm PST / 8pm EST. Next week, BIG3 moves to Seattle, WA for the playoffs at KeyArena on Sunday, August 20th. All eight teams will compete -- the top four teams for the championship title, the bottom four teams for consolation ranking.