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Release: NBA Revamps All-Star Game

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NBA All-Star Weekend begins on February 16, 2018. The festivities will take place in Los Angeles, California, but when they do, things will be much different than we’ve come to know.

On October 3, the NBA and NBPA issued a joint press release announcing that the game’s traditional format which featured the All-Stars of the Eastern Conference battling the All-Stars of the Western Conference would cease. Instead, the players receiving the highest vote totals will serve as captains, and each will select their respective teams from a pool of other All-Star players that were voted into the game.

Below is the full release…

NEW YORK, Oct. 3, 2017 – The National Basketball Association (NBA) and National Basketball Players Association (NBPA) announced today a new All-Star Game format for NBA All-Star 2018 in Los Angeles.  This will mark the NBA’s first All-Star Game without a matchup between the Eastern Conference and the Western Conference.

Under the revamped format, two captains will draft the 2018 All-Star teams from the pool of players voted as starters and reserves, making selections without regard for conference affiliation.  The captains will be the All-Star starter from each conference who receives the most fan votes in his conference.

The 67th All-Star Game will be played at Staples Center on Sunday, Feb. 18 (8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT), with TNT televising the midseason classic for the 16thconsecutive year.

“I’m thrilled with what the players and the league have done to improve the All-Star Game, which has been a priority for all of us,” said NBPA President Chris Paul of the Houston Rockets.  “We’re looking forward to putting on an entertaining show in L.A.”

“We’re excited about the new All-Star format and appreciate the players’ willingness to try something new,” said NBA President, League Operations Byron Spruell.

In another new feature, the 2018 All-Star teams will play for charity.  Each team will select a Los Angeles-area charity or national organization where donations will be used to support local efforts.

The process for selecting the 24 All-Stars will remain the same, with 12 players from each conference earning spots.  The 10 starters – two guards and three frontcourt players per conference – will continue to be chosen by a combination of fans (50 percent of the vote), current players (25 percent) and basketball media (25 percent).  The NBA’s head coaches will still select the 14 reserves, voting for two guards, three frontcourt players and two players at any position in their respective conferences.  Specific details about the draft will be announced at a later date.

TNT will reveal the All-Star Game starters and captains on Thursday, Jan. 18 and unveil the reserves on Tuesday, Jan. 23.  NBA All-Star Voting 2018 presented by Verizon will tip off on Monday, Dec. 25 before five Christmas Day games across ESPN, ABC and TNT.

The process for determining the 2018 All-Star Game head coaches is unchanged.  The head coaches whose teams clinch the best record in their respective conferences two weeks before the All-Star Game will earn the nod, though the Golden State Warriors’ Steve Kerr and the Boston Celtics’ Brad Stevens are ineligible for the honor because they coached in the 2017 All-Star Game.  Each All-Star Game coach will lead the team that includes the captain from the same conference.

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Joel Embiid Not Happy With Early Minutes Restriction

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The Philadelphia 76ers will be cautious with Joel Embiid early on this season, and the star center isn’t thrilled with that plan.

Sixers coach Brett Brown, when asked how much Embiid would play in Wednesday’s season opener against the Wizards, told reporters that he didn’t have a set number of minutes in mind before acknowledging “somewhere like in the teens.” “That’s f—ing bulls—. I wish I was playing more minutes,” Embiid told reporters on Tuesday. “I think I’m ready. I think I’m ready for more than whatever number they have. I don’t know. I wish I was playing more, but we’re going to see how that goes.”

Source: ESPN

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Chicago Bulls forwards Nikola Mirotic and Bobby Portis engaged in a physical altercation in practice Tuesday that resulted in Mirotic being hospitalized and sidelined indefinitely, league sources told Yahoo Sports.

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Source: Shams Charania of The Vertical

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Warriors Receive 2017 Championship Rings, Unveil Banner

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The Golden State Warriors held their much-anticipated ring ceremony prior to tipoff against the Houston Rockets on opening night. Commissioner Adam Silver started the event by introducing the 2016-17 champions.

The Larry O’Brien Trophy was stationed at center court, with the players camped around it. The Warriors wore white and gold hoodies, which will be signed by the players and auctioned off with the proceeds going to the Bay Area wildfire relief efforts.

Source: Chris Haynes of ESPN

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