New Orleans has an All-Star for the sixth straight year.
That is, unless he gets traded first.
Pelicans standout Anthony Davis – only three days removed from having his trade request made known publicly – was one of the 14 players announced Thursday as reserves for the All-Star Game in Charlotte. Davis wants to be swapped out of New Orleans by the Feb. 7 trade deadline, so it remains unclear if his uniform for the All-Star contest on Feb. 17 will bear a Pelicans logo or not.
The other Western Conference reserves were Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook, Denver’s Nikola Jokic, Portland’s Damian Lillard, Golden State’s Klay Thompson, San Antonio’s LaMarcus Aldridge and Minnesota’s Karl-Anthony Towns.
Indiana’s Victor Oladipo was selected as one of the Eastern Conference reserves, even though his season is over because of injury. The other reserves from the East were Toronto’s Kyle Lowry, Milwaukee’s Khris Middleton, Philadelphia’s Ben Simmons, Washington’s Bradley Beal, Detroit’s Blake Griffin and Orlando’s Nikola Vucevic – the first Magic player to make the game since Dwight Howard in 2012.
Jokic, Middleton, Simmons and Vucevic are the first-time All-Stars.
Dallas rookie Luka Doncic didn’t make the cut, getting denied in his bid to be the first rookie since Griffin in 2011 to be picked for the game. Only seven rookies in the last 30 years have been All-Stars – Griffin, Yao Ming, Tim Duncan, Grant Hill, Shaquille O’Neal, Dikembe Mutombo and David Robinson.
Utah’s Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert both fell short, as did the Los Angeles Clippers’ Tobias Harris.
Up next: The All-Star draft, to be handled by team captains LeBron James and Giannis Antetokounmpo on Feb. 7. James will have the first overall pick, and they’ll keep going until each side has 12 players for the matchup. James and Antetokounmpo will pick the starters first – with that pool including Philadelphia’s Joel Embiid, Toronto’s Kawhi Leonard, Boston’s Kyrie Irving, Charlotte’s Kemba Walker, Golden State’s Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant, Oklahoma City’s Paul George and Houston’s James Harden.