Arcade Fire’s Win Butler Talks NBA All-Star Celebrity Game Strategies

Credit: JF LalondeWin Butler will be playing Madison Square Garden next Friday night. No, he won't be playing music with Arcade Fire -- he'll be playing basketball with Common, Kevin Hart and Nick Cannon. Thursday morning, Butler was named one of the players to compete in the NBA All-Star Celebrity Game.

"I definitely have learned how to play the post, but then, as I've gotten older, I've added an outside game, three-point shooting," the Arcade Fire frontman tells Billboard of his basketball skills. "'Stretch four' wasn't so much of a position when I was a kid."

Butler is well known as a basketball fan, and he names Houston Rockets legend Hakeem Olajuwon as one of his personal heroes. He says he doesn't have a current favorite team, but he's particularly fond of New Orleans Pelicans star Anthony Davis.

"I think Anthony Davis is the first player in maybe 10 years that has that...he's not exactly Hakeem reincarnate, but he's got an incredible combination of speed, quickness and power," says Butler.

The NBA Celebrity Game won't be Butler's first basketball game on a big stage -- he's previously competed at the POP Montreal Fest's Pop vs. Jock Charity Basketball Game. Pop vs. Jock pits a group of musicians, which have included Butler, Bon Iver's Justin Vernon and Nikolai Fraiture of The Strokes, against current college basketball players, to raise money for youth sports organizations.

This year's NBA All-Star Weekend will also feature another pairing of alternative rock and basketball -- The Hold Steady will be playing The Alt-Star Party at New York City's Bowery Ballroom on February 13. The concert will be hosted by current San Antonio Spurs player Matt Bonner.

The NBA Celebrity All-Star Game will air on ESPN February 13 at 7 p.m. ET.

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