"Yeah, this weekend was just basically about earning everybody's respect, and getting a chance for people to see me that don't usually see me," Irving said. "We're not nationally televised. This weekend is to show my face to the fans and get everybody acclimated to my face in the league."
Portland rookie Damian Lillard beat Philadelphia's Jrue Holiday to win the Skills Competition. Players navigated through a dribbling circuit, had to make a jumper from the top of the key and hit passing targets. Lillard finished the course in 29.8 seconds. Holiday's time was 35.6 seconds.
"I think the biggest thing for me was to try not to be too cool and speed through it," Lillard said, "but take my time with the passes and shots."
Houston point guard Jeremy Lin and defending champion Tony Parker also were in the field, but didn't come close to qualifying for the championship round.
In the first competition of the night, the trio of Miami's Chris Bosh, WNBA star Swin Cash and Hall of Famer Dominique Wilkins won the Shooting Stars competition, beating a team of Oklahoma City guard Russell Westbrook, WNBA star Maya Moore and former Houston Rocket Robert Horry.
Each team had two minutes to make shots from six locations on the floor, including one from half-court. Wilkins sank a half-court shot for a team time of 1 minute, 29 seconds. Westbrook rimmed out several half-court tries and time ran out before he and his teammates could make one.
The NBA tweaked the scoring format for this year's All-Star skills exhibitions, with teams representing the East and West competing for charities. The Western Conference defeated the East 140-125. The West earned $350,000 for charity and the East earned $150,000.