Rihanna signed on weeks ago to judge the charity event’s halftime slam-dunk competition. But we’re told Brown was a last-minute addition to the roster this week after event organizers scouted his smooth moves at a Nike event.
Sources told us Brown, who played for Sabathia’s team, was focused on his game and not RiRi. Before tipoff, Brown played one-on-one with Jeff David, managing director of the soon-to-reopen Knickerbocker Hotel. While Brown’s moves were impressive, we’re told NBA MVP Kevin Durant, who coached Team Cano and played in casual street clothes, rolled out 10 three-pointers in a row.
After tipoff, Rihanna took her seat courtside with her girlfriends, including British model Cara Delevingne. When Brown took the floor, Rihanna pointedly ignored him and directed her focus to others in the game. “Rihanna did not look in his direction once. There was no eye contact,” a spy told us.
We also hear Rihanna’s friends did what they could to keep her distracted. “Her crew was like, ‘Keep the drinks coming,’ ” our spy said.
Brown scored 18 points during the game, one of the better performances. “He was working it for the crowd,” said our source. “He never left the court.” Team Sabathia lost by two points to Team Cano, comprised of Terrell Owens, Fabolous, DJ Khaled and others. The event raised over $1 million.
After the game, Sabathia, Carmelo Anthony, Young Jeezy, Fabolous, Angie Martinez, Robert Christopher Riley and Fat Joe celebrated their charitable work at club 40/40. Rihanna and Delevingne headed to Finale, where DJ Scram Jones spun for a hip-hop heavy crowd, but Brown ended up at Avenue in Chelsea.