NBA Skills Challenge: Spencer Dinwiddie finally hits the big stage -- in his hometown

Tell a casual NBA fan that Spencer Dinwiddie just won the Skills Challenge at NBA All-Star Weekend, and you'll probably get a blank stare, maybe even some good, old-fashioned head-scratching.

In fact, the Brooklyn Nets point guard was probably the least well-known participant in Saturday's competition that featured All-Stars Joel Embiid, Andre Drummond and Al Horford, along with borderline All-Star Lou Williams and bigger-name young players Lauri Markkanen, Jamal Murray and Buddy Hield.

Even in his own hometown of Los Angeles (he was quick to point out he didn't grow up in "the valley" ... he just went to high school there), Dinwiddie is playing second-fiddle this weekend to superstar L.A. natives like James Harden, Russell Westbrook, Paul George and DeMar DeRozan.

But, hey, it doesn't bother Dinwiddie one bit.

"I don't really too much care, man," he said. "I try to win with every single basketball game that I can. When I step on the floor, just because of my injury that I had in college (an ACL tear his senior year at Colorado), I cherish every moment to be able to step out here and play the game that I love and do it in front of my family. There was a time when they didn't think this was going to happen, so it's fun."

Dinwiddie is in the midst of a breakout season with the Nets, averaging 13.6 points and 6.7 assists after being pressed into full-time point guard duty following the injuries to Jeremy Lin and D'Angelo Russell early in the season.

"I feel bad for my guys, but in that sense, I'm also grateful for the opportunity," Dinwiddie said. "Because Brooklyn could have signed somebody else or brought somebody up from the G League instead, but they chose to rock with me while our two main guys were hurt. You know, it's just fortunate to be able to capitalize on that opportunity."

Before getting his break in Brooklyn, Dinwiddie was drafted in the second round of the 2014 NBA Draft by the Detroit Pistons, where he bounced back and forth between the G League and the pros before being traded to the Chicago Bulls. The Bulls then chose to go with Michael Carter-Williams over Dinwiddie as their backup point guard.

In other words, Dinwiddie is used to being passed over. So it doesn't bother him if people don't know his face, even after taking down some of the best players in the league on the national stage in the Skills Challenge his hometown.

"It's big for me to even be at All-Star Weekend considering the road that's been in my career, very up and down," Dinwiddie said. "It all really feels and seems full circle because I got to come home and do it in front of my family."

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