We reached the agreed date and the NBA has announced the players from each conference who will participate in the next All-Star Game as substitutes. It has been a week since we have known the ten players who will be on the court from the initial jump, and now it has been the turn to meet those who will wait for their moment from the bench.
The seven reserves that were announced during the afternoon of this Tuesday, were selected by the coaches of each conference. The seven places were divided between two outside players, three inside and two spaces with wild cards so that the scoresheets are completed with 12 athletes per team.
For the Eastern Conference, the chosen ones were: James Harden of the Brooklyn Nets, Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum of the Boston Celtics, Ben Simmons of the Philadelphia 76ers, Zach LaVine of the Chicago Bulls, Julius Randle of the New York Knicks, and Nikola Vucevic of the Orlando Magic.
While for the Western Conference they were selected: Damian Lillard of the Portland Trail Blazers, Chris Paul of the Phoenix Suns, Zion Williamson of the New Orleans Pelicans, Anthony Davis of the Los Angeles Lakers, Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert of the Utah Jazz, and Paul George of the Los Angeles Clippers.
As every year, the controversies are already beginning to grow in media and social networks. The most resounding absences from the Western Conference may be those of Mike Conley, Devin Booker, DeMar DeRozan, or even the young Ja Morant and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. The case of Mike Conley will surely be one of the most remembered. The Utah Jazz point guard, currently the league’s best team, is widely considered the best active player to ever make an All-Star Game. But all of them will still have a chance to be named by the NBA as reserves; due to the injury suffered by Anthony Davis and that will cause him to miss the event.
In the Eastern Conference, for their part, they are not strangers to controversy. With so many names worthy of being chosen, it is inevitable that good players will be left out. Such is the case of Domantas Sabonis, Trae Young or Jimmy Butler; that despite their good seasons they will not be able to participate in the All-Star Game (except for some injury to the players already chosen).
It should be remembered that these teams will not play divided by conferences. As has been the case in the last three years, the most voted players from each conference will hold a televised draft on March 4 where they will choose who to play with. In this 2021 edition, LeBron James and Kevin Durant will be in charge of choosing teams.
The LeBron team will be led by Quin Snyder, coach of the Utah Jazz, the team with the best record in the Western Conference. While the Durant team will be under the orders of Doc Rivers, coach of the Philadelphia 76ers, the team with the best record in the Eastern Conference.
Finally, it should be noted that in this edition of the All-Star we will have four debutants, which could be more depending on a new player included to cover any injured. At the moment those who will make their debut will be Zion Williamson, Jaylen Brown, Zach Lavine and Julius Randle. (GG) (NBA Maniacs)