Russell Westbrook, Kristaps Porzingis lead NBA 2018 All-Star reserves
Following last week’s All-Star starters selection, the list of 14 players were leaked by several sources prior to the NBA All-Star selection show on TNT, according to sources like Shams Charania of The Vertical, ESPN’s Chris Haynes, and Adrian Wojnarowski.
- Russell Westbrook (Thunder)
- Damian Lillard (Trail Blazers)
- Klay Thompson (Warriors)
- Draymond Green (Warriors)
- Jimmy Butler (Timberwolves)
- Karl-Anthony Towns (Timberwolves)
- LaMarcus Aldridge (Spurs)
- Victor Oladipo (Pacers)
- Kyle Lowry (Raptors)
- Bradley Beal (Wizards)
- John Wall (Wizards)
- Kristaps Porzingis (Knicks)
- Kevin Love (Cavaliers)
- Al Horford (Celtics)
The starters, announced on Thursday, included:
• East: DeMar DeRozan (Raptors), Kyrie Irving (Celtics), LeBron James (Cavaliers), Giannis Antetokounmpo (Bucks), Joel Embiid (Sixers)
• West: James Harden (Rockets), Stephen Curry (Warriors), Kevin Durant (Warriors), Anthony Davis (Pelicans), DeMarcus Cousins (Pelicans)
James and Curry are slated to pick their own teammates from the pool of players selected for the game in a blacktop-like affair.
The NBA ditched the classic East vs. West matchup prior to the start of the regular season, hoping to give the All-Star Game a fresh look, garner more viewers, and add the element of competitiveness that was so badly lacking from the game in recent years. Yet the format for injury replacement will be the same as before, replacing the injured player with one from the same conference.
This 67th iteration of the mid-February classic will now feature a much more interesting twist to it, while some could argue that it has more than ever transformed into a popularity contest at the wake of dissatisfaction from some fans and experts.
Yet the NBA has been willing to roll the dice with these changes, hoping it revives the long-lost interest in this long-lasting basketball tradition.