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Kerr finally breaks through to win 3-point contest

February 9, 1997

CLEVELAND (AP) _ Steve Kerr took a relaxed approach Saturday night and finally _ on his fourth try _ won the All-Star 3-point shootout, beating defending champion Tim Legler in the finals, 22-18.

Kerr, the Chicago Bulls’ long distance expert and the NBA’s career leader in 3-point percentage entering the season, made 17 of 25 shots in the final round, including all five of his two-point balls.

Legler of the Washington Bullets, who has missed the entire season with knee and hamstring injuries, hit 15 of 25 shots in the final round.

Kerr’s best previous showing in the competition was third. He said he took a different approach this year and didn’t practice as hard and therefore was more relaxed.

He just barely got past the first round, finishing fourth with 15 points. He then began to find his rhythm, scoring 21 in the semifinals. In the final round, he won the coin toss and decided to shoot first and put the pressure on Legler.

Kerr made nine straight shots at one point. A former member of the Cleveland Cavaliers, he was cheered by a loud crowd at the Gund Arena.

Glen Rice took third, Walt Williams was fourth, John Stockton fifth, Dale Ellis sixth, Terry Mills seventh and Sam Perkins eighth.

The 3-point shootout was sponsored by AT & T.

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