The NBA welcomed four first-timers to its 2021 All-Star Game.
New Orleans’ Zion Williamson, Chicago’s Zach LaVine, Boston’s Jaylen Brown, New York’s Julius Randle on Tuesday were named All-Stars for the first time.
They are among the 14 reserves — seven from the Eastern Conference and seven from the Western Conference — selected by NBA head coaches.
And don’t worry Damian Lillard fans. Even though he was not voted in as a starter by fans, players and media, coaches made sure he was selected as a reserve.
East reserves: Boston’s Jayson Tatum, Brooklyn’s James Harden, Philadelphia’s Ben Simmons, Orlando’s Nikola Vucevic, LaVine, Brown and Randle.
West reserves: Los Angeles Lakers’ Anthony Davis, Los Angeles Clippers’ Paul George, Utah’s Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert, Phoenix’s Chris Paul, Lillard and Williamson.
LaVine is the Bull’s first All-Star since 2017, and Randle is the Knicks’ first All-Star since 2018. Harden joins teammates Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant, giving the Nets three All-Stars for the first time in franchise history.
Zion Williamson become the fourth-youngest All-Star behind Kobe Bryant, LeBron James and Magic Johnson. (Photo: Mike Dinovo, USA TODAY Sports)
At 20 years old, Williamson is the fourth youngest All-Star behind Kobe Bryant, LeBron James and Magic Johnson, and Paul becomes the third player (Moses Malone and Shaquille O’Neal are the others) to become an All-Star with four teams.
Notable omissions: Milwaukee’s Khris Middleton, Charlotte’s Gordon Hayward, Philadelphia’s Tobias Harris, Atlanta’s Trae Young, Indiana’s Domantas Sabonis and Miami’s Bam Adebayo and Jimmy Butler in the East; Utah’s Mike Conley, New Orleans’ Brandon Ingram, Denver’s Jamal Murry, Sacramento’s De’Aaron Fox, San Antonio’s DeMar DeRozan, Oklahoma City’s Shai-Gilgeous Alexander, Houston’s Christian Wood, Memphis’ Ja Morant and Phoenix’s Devin Booker in the West.
The starters were announced last week. The two captains — Lakers star LeBron James and Brooklyn star Kevin Durant — will select their teams in a televised draft on March 4. James has the first pick.
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