The WNBA has a 4-point shot and other new rules for this year's All-Star Game, and superstars love it

·5 min read
Kelsey Plum.
Kelsey Plum looks to dribble past fellow 2022 WNBA All-Star Skylar Diggins-Smith.AP Photo/Darryl Webb
  • The WNBA has introduced new rules — including a 4-point shot — for the 2022 All-Star game.

  • Players will earn extra points for sinking a shot from four designated spots 28 feet from the rim.

  • Nine All-Stars — including three of the last four WNBA MVPs — told Insider their thoughts on the new rules.

CHICAGO — The WNBA All-Star Game will look a little different this year — and not just because four superstars are participating for the very first time.

The league announced that Sunday's All-Star contest at Chicago's Wintrust Arena will feature several new rules to increase the pace of play and overall excitement throughout the game. Among the most unique: no free throws, 20-second shot clocks, and 4-point shots.

A'ja Wilson.
WNBA All-Star captain A'ja Wilson.AP Photo/Ellen Schmidt

Teams will only have 20 seconds — a considerable reduction from the usual 24-second shot clock — to put the ball up on the rim. When players are fouled, they'll automatically be credited with the points they'd ordinarily be eligible to earn via free throws. And, if they're really feeling good about their shooting stroke, the All-Stars will be able to earn extra points for sinking shots from four designated "4-point shot areas" located 28 feet away from the hoop.

Eight of the All-Stars playing this weekend — including three of the last four WNBA MVPs — told Insider their thoughts on the league's creative changes:

Jewell Loyd —4x All-Star

Jewell Loyd.
Stephen Brashear-USA TODAY Sports

"Adjusting to the game and times is something that's entertaining for fans. Obviously it gives us a little bit more incentives, and it's an All-Star Game, so your job is to put on a show a little bit."

"And, you know, why not? I mean, I shoot those shots every time I'm playing pick-up anyway, so why not shoot it in the game?"

Arike Ogunbowale — 2x All-Star

Arike Ogunbowale.
Arike Ogunbowale.AP Photo/Brandon Wade

"I think it's gonna be cool. I think it's gonna make it exciting. Shorter shot clock means quicker shots and then the 4-point shot — people are gonna be trying to shoot those. So I think it'll be fun."

"We shoot from wherever."

Jonquel Jones — 4x All-Star

Jonquel Jones.
AP Photo/Ashley Landis

"I didn't even know about it until I came and then the commissioner told me about it. So I'm excited for the 4-point line."

"I think in my first two All-Stars, I was just moving all over the place, but I feel like the older I've gotten, the more I enjoy these moments and cherish them and take advantage of them."

Sabrina Ionescu — 1x All-Star

Sabrina Ionescu.
Sabrina Ionescu.AP Photo/Rick Scuteri

"Hopefully I'll make one."

A'ja Wilson — 4x All-Star

a'ja wilson
AP Photo/John Locher

"For sure, I'm going for the 4-pointer every time. Hopefully Becky [Hammon, head coach of the Las Vegas Aces] still gives me the green light, but I'm gonna do it anyways. I'm super excited, but see also now it spoils me; I'm gonna get used to All-Star rules when I go back to the regular season and try balling out."

"I'm definitely gonna start chucking up some four pointers. That just sounds weird saying."

Ariel Atkins — 2x All-Star

Ariel Atkins.
AP Photo/Terrance Williams

"Everybody's got my name on that, huh? Maybe I'll only shoot four point shots who knows? Nah, I'm kidding, I probably won't, but I'm definitely gonna put up some of those. I don't know how deep the range is on 'em. I didn't even get to see the decal yet. 28? I could do that."

"I think it's fun. I think that's what All-Star Games are for. In games like these, as much as they are for us, it's about the fan experience as well. And I think it creates more enjoyment and more excitement for them."

Natasha Howard — 2x All-Star

Natasha Howard.
Natasha Howard.AP Photo/Rick Scuteri

"It's gonna be fun and gonna be a fast game, you know? It's gonna be exciting having all the fans. And the AAU girls will be there supporting us, too, and just being their role model to look up to. So it's gonna be a really, really, really good game."

Kelsey Plum — 1x All-Star

Las Vegas Aces star Kelsey Plum.
Kelsey Plum.AP Photo/Elaine Thompson

"When I heard about the 4-point shot, I was like 'Someone made that for me.' I'm super excited. It's just gonna be a ton of fun. I think the new format's gonna give fans the entertainment that they want, because really this is for the fans. This is about entertainment. This is about fun basketball. And who wants to wait around and watch people shoot free throws? Just give it to us and let's go."

Breanna Stewart — 4x All-Star

Breanna Stewart.
Breanna Stewart.AP Photo/John Bazemore

"I think the strategy is to score quick, and now if you get fouled, it's automatic points. So everyone's gonna be shooting 100% from the line, which is amazing. But I think we want to do things to make the fans really involved and have fun."

"I think the All-Star Game is just getting more and more exciting. It's something that obviously people look forward to playing in, know it's a huge honor to be a part of and wanting to have one, but also want their team to win."

"It's a little bit of bragging rights over each other. Luckily all my [Seattle Storm] teammates are on the same team, so we have to just win."

 

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