Overcome the equator of the regular season and with several teams in full fight for access to the “playoffs”, the NBA dumps this weekend in Los Angeles (California) with the celebration of the All-Star Party, an event that brings together the greatest talents – not injured – of the League.
Unfortunately for fans, some of those initially chosen to attend the event will be absent due to injuries, such as DeMarcus Cousins, Kevin Love, John Wall, Kristaps Porzingis, Malcolm Brogdon, Aaron Gordon or Lonzo Ball.
Los Angeles (California) welcomes tonight this great basketball event with a fundamental novelty for the game on Sunday: instead of the traditional confrontation between the East and West Conference, the templates were formed according to the choices of the two most voted players, in this case, LeBron James (Cleveland Cavaliers) and Stephen Curry (Golden State Warriors).
But the party begins today with the duel between young American promises and the rest of the world. The local team consists of Jaylen Brown (Celtics), John Collins (Hawks), Kris Dunn (Bulls), Brandon Ingram (Lakers), Kyle Kuzma (Lakers), Donovan Mitchell (Jazz), Dennis Smith, Jr. (Mavericks) , Jayson Tatum (Celtics), Taurean Prince (Hawks) and De’Aaron Fox (Kings).
The foreign team is made up of Bogdan Bogdanovic (Kings), Dillon Brooks (Grizzlies), Joel Embiid (76ers), Buddy Hield (Kings), Lauri Markkanen (Bulls), Jamal Murray (Nuggets), Frank Ntilikina (Knicks), Domantas Sabonis ( Pacers), Dario Saric (76ers) and Ben Simmons (76ers).
Embiid, one of the most outstanding personalities of the League, promised a lot of fun to the fans.
“They told me that I’m going to have to dance in front of everybody, so it would be nice to have a teammate next to me so that I do not get scared,” said the Cameroonian in reference to the criticized absence of Ben Simmons in the Match of the Stars.
Saturday will be the turn for the skill contest (Spencer Dinwiddie, Joel Embiid, Al Horford, Lauri Markkanen, Buddy Hield, Jamal Murray, Kristaps Porzingis and Lou Williams and the traditional triple competitions (Eric Gordon, Klay Thompson, Bradley Beal, Paul George, Kyle Lowry, Devin Booker, Wayne Ellington and Tobias Harris) and mates (Victor Oladipo, Larry Nance Jr., Dennis Smith Jr. and Donovan Mitchell).
Nance Jr., former player of the Lakers, is the son of Larry Nance, winner of the contest in 1984.
Finally, Sunday will be the turn for the idols of millions of spectators.
The team of LeBron James, trained by Dwane Casey (Toronto Raptors), will be formed by James himself, Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, Anthony Davis, Paul George, Russell Westbrook, Goran Dragic, Andre Drummond, Bradley Beal, LaMarcus Aldridge, Victor Oladipo and Kemba Walker.
The group of Stephen Curry, directed by Mike D’Antoni (Houston Rockets), will have Curry himself, James Harden, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Joel Embiid, DeMar DeRozan, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, Jimmy Butler, Karl-Anthony Towns, Kyle Lowry, Damian Lillard and Al Horford.
Weekend activities will be broadcast live to 215 countries and territories in 50 different languages, the NBA said, noting that a total of 515 media outlets are accredited.
The Sunday All-Star Game, which will feature a musical show at halftime with the signing of Pharrell Williams, will begin at 5:00 pm local time at the Staples Center, the Los Angeles Lakers pavilion and the Los Angeles Lakers. the appointment for the third time after the 2004 and 2011 editions.
In Spain it will be possible to follow live during the early hours of Monday at 2:00 through Movistar +.
Los Angeles has hosted the All-Star Weekend four times and six if you count the ones organized in the next town of Inglewood.
Precisely this year marks the 55th anniversary of the first All-Star Weekend in Los Angeles, in 1963, when Bill Russell scored 19 points and 24 rebounds to guide the East to a victory over the West by 108-115.
The event is expected to generate $ 116 million: $ 26 million for the local economy, with an additional $ 90 million from visitor spending on food, drink and lodging, according to a study by Micronomics. efe
Antonio Martín Guirado