On Thursday, the NBA revealed the fan and player voted NBA All-Star Starters from both the East and the West — although, this year’s NBA All-Star Game will not be how it usually was with Eastern All-Stars versus Western All-Stars.
This year, the highest voted player of each respected conference will be team captain and will select players from a batch of specific players selected by NBA players and coaches.
The Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers have faced each other for an NBA record, three straight NBA finals, so it is only fitting for the two stars of those respected teams to be this year’s NBA All-Star team captains; Stephen Curry of the defending champion Golden State Warriors, and LeBron James, who just recently became the youngest player in NBA history to hit 30,000 points in their career.
The other four NBA All-Star Starters from the Western conference are fellow Golden State Warrior, small forward Kevin Durant, New Orleans Pelicans dynamic big-man duo of center DeMarcus Cousins and 2017 NBA All-Star MVP, power forward Anthony Davis, along with shooting guard James Harden of the Houston Rockets.
For the Eastern conference, former teammate of LeBron James, Boston Celtics point guard Kyrie Irving, Toronto Raptors shooting guard DeMar DeRozan, Milwaukee Bucks small forward, the “Greek Freak” Giannis Antetokounmpo (try spelling that without messing up), and finally for his first NBA All-Star selection, Philadelphia Sixers center, Joel Embiid.
All-Star weekend kicks-off Friday, February 16th and runs until the NBA All-Star game on Sunday hosted by Los Angeles in Staples Center.
The last time the All-Star game was in Los Angeles seven years ago, Kobe Bryant was named All-Star MVP and the West just skimmed by with a 148-143 victory over the East.
This year, times and names have changed. The two team captains do not have to select from their respective conference, so if Curry wants to take Antetokounmpo first selection, than so be it, even though Antetokounmpo is an Eastern All-Star. James, however, was the number one overall vote-getter and thus will receive first pick from the star-studded batch.
LeBron topped Curry with 2,638,294 votes compared to 2,379,494.
James has yet to comment on who he wants on his team, but Curry has stated he wants, “Giannis. He dunked on me last year. May have to get him on my team so that doesn’t happen again.”
Needless to say, we await the NBA All-Star Draft and ultimately a VERY interesting All-Star Game.