Like most sports in America, the All-Star game is little more than an excess of pageantry, The stars show up, but the main concern is not getting injured.
In the NBA, that usually means the game is filled with dunks and three-pointers, with little defense in-between. Last year, the final score was 192-182, with the West winning behind 52 points from Anthony Davis. In the three-point era, the All-Star game last year featured 112 three-point attempts. I’m sure this year there will be even more.
However, the All-Star game is notable this year for two reasons. First of all, the Minnesota Timberwolves are going to be represented tonight by two players, which certainly is a feat for a franchise that has not made the playoffs for more than a decade. Jimmy Butler is an old hat at the All-Star game at this point, as tonight will be his fourth appearance. However, this will be the first All-Star appearance for Karl-Anthony Towns, although it will certainly not be the only time the Star center is playing with the best of the best.
Of course, the other exciting development is the new team constructions. Instead of a straight Western Conference and Eastern Conference split, the two highest vote getters in each conference, LeBron James and Steph Curry, got to select their teammates out of the All-Star pool. Hopefully, this selection process will be televised next year to continue the further development that is the NBA Soap Opera that we all happily subscribe to.
- LeBron James, Cleveland Cavaliers
- Kevin Durant, Golden State Warriors
- Anthony Davis, New Orleans Pelicans
- Kyrie Irving, Boston Celtics
- LaMarcus Aldridge, San Antonio Spurs
- Bradley Beal, Washington Wizards
- Goran Dragic, Miami Heat
- Andre Drummond, Detroit Pistons
- Paul George, Oklahoma City Thunder
- Victor Oladipo, Indiana Pacers
- Kemba Walker, Charlotte Hornets
- Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City Thunder
- Stephen Curry, Golden State Warriors
- James Harden, Houston Rockets
- DeMar DeRozan, Toronto Raptors
- Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks
- Joel Embiid, Philadelphia 76ers
- Jimmy Butler, Minnesota Timberwolves
- Draymond Green, Golden State Warriors
- Al Horford, Boston Celtics
- Damian Lillard, Portland Trail Blazers
- Kyle Lowry, Toronto Raptors
- Klay Thompson, Golden State Warriors
- Karl-Anthony Towns, Minnesota Timberwolves
Team Curry seems favored, simply due to their three-point shooting prowess as well as the fact that they have not been hit by the injury bug like Team LeBron. The Wolves players are both on Team Curry, which gives us the incentive to root for the squad, even if that means cheering on a bunch of Warriors.
Tonight is simply about having fun. The game may tighten up in the last few minutes, but everyone is here to have a good time and try to enjoy one of the few breaks they get in the NBA season. For Wolves fans, we at least get a little personal stake in the night’s activities.