Kapono Takes Shot at Hodges

Three Point Shooters 1990How about that photo?

Back in 1990 (19 years ago, really?), Lakers special assistant coach Craig Hodges, then with the Bulls (second row, far right), was taking on Reggie Miller, Jon Sundvold, Mark Price, Larry Bird, Bobby Hansen, Craig Ehlo and Michael Jordan.

For this season’s shootout, Hodges asked us to send a message to Toronto’s Jason Kapono: Try shooting against eight guys instead of six, and good luck winning if Larry Bird’s in the mix.

Hodges was (mostly) joking around, and included a hearty “Tell him good luck!” when we asked him about the Raptors shooter. The former Chicago Bulls bomb-dropper jests because Kapono is looking to join Hodges and Bird as the only three-time champions of the NBA’s Three-Point Shootout. Bird beat Hodges in 1986, ’87 and ’88 before Hodges finally broke through for his first of three titles in 1990.

Indeed, when Hodges and Bird did it, there were eight shooters (1986 to 2003) before the NBA cut two out and went with six. That makes winning it all just a bit easier these days, but the first four balls still count for a point and the final rock scores two points. Here are the rules:

Each of six shooters – Kapono, Mike Bibby, Daequan Cook, Danny Granger, Rashard Lewis and Roger Mason – will take as many of 25 possible shots as they can in a full 60-second time period. The first four balls on the rack count for one point, and the final multi-colored “money” ball counts for two. The three shooters with the highest scores advance to the final round, where scores go back to zero.

While we’re on the topic, here’s a list of the former champs:

Jason Kapono1986: Larry Bird
’87: Bird
’88: Bird
’89: Dale Ellis
’90: Craig Hodges
’91: Hodges
’92: Hodges
’93: Mark Price
’94: Price
’95: Glen Rice
’96: Tim Legler
’97: Steve Kerr
’98: Jeff Hornacek
’99: (No game)
’00: Hornacek
’01: Ray Allen
’02: Peja Stojakovic
’03: Stojakovic
’04: Voshon Lenard
’05: Quentin Richardson
’06: Dirk Nowitzki
’07: Jason Kapono
’08: Kapono
’09: We’ll see in a few hours…