ORLANDO, Fla. All-Star games just aren't as much fun for big guys.
"Absolutely not," said Kings center DeMarcus Cousins. "We all know that. All-Star games are for guards, but at the same time it's a fun experience."
For the second year in a row, Cousins was on the winning team as part of the NBA's All-Star Weekend festivities as Team Chuck beat Team Shaq 146-133 in the Rising Stars Challenge.
Cousins finished with 18 points, 11 rebounds and three assists.
This year's format was different from previous seasons. Team Chuck was comprised of first- and second-year players selected by Hall of Famer Charles Barkley.
The players on Team Shaq were selected by recently retired star center Shaquille O'Neal.
In previous years, rookies played against second-year players.
Cousins wasn't quite as dominant Friday night as he was in his first appearance during All-Star Weekend, in which he had a game-high 33 points with 14 rebounds, three steals, an assist and a block in helping the Rookies beat the Sophomores 148-140 in Los Angeles.
The Kings center seems to have figured out how to succeed in a game that's not designed for post players.
"You've got to learn how to run with these guards," Cousins said. "That's what it is. In an All-Star game, they want it to be highlights, so you've got join the highlights some kind of way."
The one thing that was the same was a guard winning the MVP award.
Last year, the MVP was Cousins' college teammate, John Wall, who tallied a record 22 assists. Wall was the first overall pick in the 2010 NBA draft.
Friday night, Cousins again saw a No. 1 overall draft pick win the MVP award as Kyrie Irving, chosen last year by Cleveland, won the fan voting for the award.
Irving had 34 points on 12-of-13 shooting and nine assists for Team Chuck. He made all eight of his three-point shots.
"It's kind of unfortunate that (shooting) comes in an All-Star game," Irving said. "These stats don't carry over to the season. But at the end of the day, it was still fun to get out there with those talented guys."
Philadelphia's second-year guard, Evan Turner, had 16 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists for Team Chuck, while Indiana sophomore Paul George added 23 points.
Cleveland rookie Tristan Thompson (20 points) and Detroit second-year center Greg Monroe (19 points, 10 rebounds) led Team Shaq.
Cousins put himself into MVP consideration early with 10 points and three rebounds in the first five minutes of the game before it became a showcase for the guards.
After consecutive years participating in All-Star Weekend events, Cousins has found that he enjoys the experience and noted he is 2-0 in such games and needs a championship belt.
Cousins plans to get some rest the remainder of this weekend but said he enjoys participating in the All-Star festivities.
"Hopefully, I can continue to be a part of it," he said.
The way to guarantee his participation next year would be to make the All-Star team.
The 2013 All-Star Game will be in Houston.
Cousins has a plan to get there.
"Keep working, help my team get some wins," Cousins said. "Hopefully, I'll be there."