Local specials add spice to NBA All-Star Weekend

There are a couple of local specials to celebrate the NBA All-Star Game in Philadelphia Sunday.

Courier Times E-mail

There are a couple of local specials to celebrate the NBA All-Star Game in Philadelphia Sunday.

First it's "The Second Annual Hoop Magic Celebrity Basketball Game and Slam Dunk Showdown" on CN8 tonight at 8 p.m. Some of the celebrities who will play include Allen Iverson lookalike Ludacris, Philly's Boyz II Men, former junior college basketball star turned rap impresario Master P, Master P's son, Little Romeo, and more. The events will be held at the Liacouras Center at Temple University.

Then, move over Allen "The Answer" Iverson, as Larry "The Anchor" Mendte hosts "NBC 10's All-Star, All-Access" special tomorrow at 7:30 p.m. Mendte, a hoops junkie and Sixers season ticket holder (not a fair weather fan, he had season tickets for the 9-73 team in 1973-74) will team up with John Clark to check out the parties and events as many celebrities are in town for the game.

Then it will be a homecoming for former Sixers president Pat Croce, as he'll be part of the NBC pre-game show team doing the "NBA All-Star Game" on NBC at 5 p.m. Allen Iverson and Dikembe Mutombo will represent the Sixers. Marv Albert, Bill Walton and Steve "Snapper" Jones will call the game.

McGinnis big winner

Even though the Sixers lost in the NBA Finals, Sixers radio broadcaster Tom McGinnis has become a big winner with extra endorsement deals and speaking engagements.

The booming voice of the team's play-by-play man can be heard all over the radio in commercials for the Turnersville Auto Complex as well as McDonald's for the Allen Iverson bobble-head doll promotion.

"I've always done a smattering of voice work, but, of course, when you are affiliated with a winning team, you get more opportunities," said McGinnis who was preparing for a speaking engagement in Delaware.

McGinnis, now in his seventh year with the team, is optimistic about the Sixers' chances to repeat as Eastern Conference champions.

"The Sixers were 11-4 in January, but their main competition is from New Jersey, Milwaukee, and Toronto," he said.

McGinnis has been married since September to newly-promoted KYW-3 weekend anchor Robin Rieger.

Everybody loves Roenick

Flyers star Jeremy Roenick got some super exposure as his Toyota commercial with "Arli$$" star Robert Wuhl aired during "The Super Bowl."

Olympics in spotlight

For the next two weeks, it will be "The Olympic Tonight Show with Jay Leno" as the late night show will go 90 minutes during the Winter Olympics. There will be nightly reports from Salt Lake City from correspondents such as Katie Couric and Bob Costas, guest appearances from Olympic athletes and, of course, celebrities galore.

Some of the guests lined up for the next two weeks include Kevin Costner, Denzel Washington, Mel Gibson and Freddie Prinze Jr. (which of these doesn't belong?)

Some gold-medal caliber musical talent is also set to appear - Sheryl Crow, Macy Gray, Creed, Britney Spears, Foo Fighters and Nelly Furtado.


Laura Nachman covers television and radio sports for the Courier Times. Write to her in care of the Courier Times, 8400 Route 13, Levittown, PA 19057, fax 215-949-4177 or e-mail bradyresident@aol.com.


Friday, February 8, 2002