NBA All-Star draft will begin with subs, end with starters
The NBA All-Star Game player draft, already moved to immediately before the Sunday game, will feature another twist.
Team captains Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks and LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers will first select the reserves for their squads, then divvy up the players who are designated as starters, TNT announced Friday night.
The draft will be held on the same Salt Lake City court where the game will be played a short time later.
In the five previous years during which the captain-draft format was utilized, the squads were picked days in advance of the game, and the starters were selected ahead of the subs.
The players whom Antetokounmpo and James will be selecting to join them as starters are the Dallas Mavericks duo of Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving, the Denver Nuggets’ Nikola Jokic, the Boston Celtics’ Jayson Tatum, the Philadelphia 76ers’ Joel Embiid, the Memphis Grizzlies’ Ja Morant, the Cleveland Cavaliers’ Donovan Mitchell and the Utah Jazz’s Lauri Markkanen.
The available subs from the Eastern Conference are the Miami Heat’s Bam Adebayo, the Celtics’ Jaylen Brown, the Chicago Bulls’ DeMar DeRozan, the Indiana Pacers’ Tyrese Haliburton, the Bucks’ Jrue Holiday, the New York Knicks’ Julius Randle and the Toronto Raptors’ Pascal Siakam.
The reserves from the Western Conference are the Sacramento Kings’ De’Aaron Fox and Domantas Sabonis, the Minnesota Timberwolves’ Anthony Edwards, the Los Angeles Clippers’ Paul George, the Oklahoma City Thunder’s Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, the Grizzlies’ Jaren Jackson Jr. and the Portland Trail Blazers’ Damian Lillard.
James has a 5-0 record as an All-Star captain, while Antetokounmpo has an 0-2 mark.