New York (AFP)
The two captains of the NBA All-Star Game selections LeBron James and Giannis Antetokounmpo made up their respective teams on Thursday, the first retaining his rival Clippers Kawhi Leonard while the second opted, among others, for the French Rudy Gobert.
Since 2018, the North American basketball league has changed the staffing of the All-Star Game. She abandoned the East vs. West format to let each captain, in turn, choose the player he prefers.
Captains because the best ranked by fans, journalists and players, LeBron James and Giannis Antetokounmpo could thus draw from the reservoir of the 22 other players selected for the All-Star Game.
LeBron James played loyalty to his team by keeping his Los Angeles Lakers teammate Anthony Davis in first choice, while Giannis Antetokounmpo set his sights on the pivot of Philadelphia Joel Embiid.
Called to choose again, the Lakers' No. 23 called rival Los Angeles Clippers and reigning champion Kawhi Leonard.
The major five composed by LeBron James is of a very high standard, with four candidates for the title of best player of the season. Besides James and Leonard, he counts, in fact, the Slovenian of Dallas Luka Doncic and the back of Houston James Harden.
The "Team Giannis" will field a five including the Cameroonian from Toronto Pascal Siakam, the Boston leader, Kemba Walker, and the Atlanta, Trae Young.
Last season's best player on the bench can count on his Milwaukee teammate Khris Middleton, Bam Adebayo (Miami), Kyle Lowry (Toronto), Jimmy Butler (Miami), Brandon Ingram (New Orleans), Donovan Mitchell (Utah) and French Rudy Gobert (Utah).
It is Rudy Gobert's first selection for the All-Star game, which has already welcomed two other Frenchmen, Tony Parker and Joakim Noah.
The substitutes for "Team LeBron" are Damian Lillard (Portland), Ben Simmons (Philadelphia), Nikola Jokic (Denver), Jayson Tatum (Boston), Chris Paul (Oklahoma City), Russell Westbrook (Houston) and Domantas Sabonis (Indiana ).
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