James, 1st-timers Morant, Wiggins named All-Star starters

on Jan27
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LeBron James will return to Cleveland as an All-Star Game captain, and Ja Morant and Andrew Wiggins are headed there as first-time selections.

MVP Nikola Jokic of the Denver Nuggets and Warriors superstar Stephen Curry joined them Thursday as the other players voted as starters from the Western Conference.

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The starters from the East were Brooklyn’s Kevin Durant, Milwaukee’s Giannis Antetokounmpo and Philadelphia’s Joel Embiid in the frontcourt, along with Atlanta’s Trae Young and Chicago’s DeMar DeRozan.

James and Durant, as the leading vote-getters in each conference, will be the captains who draft players for the rosters for the Feb. 20 game in Cleveland.

Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant (7) gestures towards Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid after an NBA basketball game Thursday, Dec. 30, 2021, in New York. 76ers won 110-102.

Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant (7) gestures towards Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid after an NBA basketball game Thursday, Dec. 30, 2021, in New York. 76ers won 110-102.
(AP Photo/Adam Hunger)

James, who began his NBA career with the Cavaliers in 2003 and led them to the 2016 championship during his second stint there, was chosen as an All-Star for the 18th straight time. He has been a captain every year since the league went away from the East vs. West format.

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Durant’s availability for the game is in doubt because of a sprained knee ligament.

Fan ballots accounted for 50% of the vote, with a media panel and current players each accounting for 25%.

Reserves for the game, voted on by the head coaches in each conference, will be announced on Feb. 3.



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