The NBA all-star weekend marks the half-point mark of the regular season. Typically held in mid-February, it is scheduled on the 14th to 16th this year. It is a chance for the league players to show their skills through exhibitions, performances, and special competitions. The highlight of the weekend is the All-Star Game. This year's starters chosen by popular vote are:
There are a few surprises in the Eastern lineup. Trae Young, the point guard for the Atlanta Hawks, is averaging 22.5 points, 4 rebounds, and 8.3 assists per game. On paper, his numbers are certainly better than the explosive Ben Simmons and solid all-rounder guard for the Miami Heat, Jimmy Butler. But stats can be deceiving, the Atlanta Hawks are currently the worst team in the Eastern Conference at 11-35. In spite of All-Star numbers by Young and John Collins, in the bigger scheme of things, it isn't really enough to matter in the NBA. Let's see how his performance in the All-Star Game makes an impact against the West.
Kemba Walker, the other Eastern Conference guard, also comes in as a surprise. Traded into the Celtics this year from Charlotte Hornets, he also isn't making big waves for the Celtics. Averaging 22.1 points, 3.9 rebounds, and 5.0 assists a game certainly are All-Star numbers. However, if you actually saw a Celtics game, he is acting more like a sidekick to the young Jayson Tatum.
According to SportingNews.com, the West lineup is pretty much what everyone expects. Future Hall-of-Famer, former MVP, former Champion, Superstar veteran Lebron James is the Captain. Fan favourite Luka Doncic is finally getting a guard slot. Former, reigning, and most-likely this season's scoring champion James Harden gets the other guard slot. Lebron James' tag-team partner, Anthony Davis, is getting the other forward slot. Finally, Clippers newcomer Kawhi Leonard is getting the big man position.
Reigning MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Eastern All-Stars are going to have a hard time even without Stephen Curry playing for the West.