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Report: D’Angelo Russell to Replace Victor Oladipo in All-Star Game

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Brooklyn Nets guard D’Angelo Russell has been named by NBA Commissioner Adam Silver to replace injured Indiana Pacers guard Victor Oladipo in the 2019 NBA All-Star Game, which will be played on Sunday, Feb. 17 at Spectrum Center in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Russell has earned his first NBA All-Star selection and becomes the Nets’ first All-Star since the 2013-14 season (Joe Johnson).  In his fourth season, the 6-5 guard is averaging career highs of 19.6 points and 6.4 assists to go with 3.8 rebounds and 1.17 steals in 52 games.  He is shooting career highs of 43.8 percent from the field, 37.4 percent from three-point range and 80.8 percent from the free throw line.  Russell has made a career-high 140 three-pointers, the third-highest total among Eastern Conference players.

In January, Russell averaged 23.8 points and 7.3 assists in 15 games as the Nets went 11-4 to finish the month with a 28-25 record.  Russell was named the NBA Eastern Conference Player of the Week for Week 14 of the 2018-19 season (Jan. 14-20).

Source: NBA

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Sources: NBA Submit Proposal to Lower Draft-Eligible Age to 18

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The NBA has submitted to the National Basketball Players Association a formal proposal that will lower the draft-eligible age to 18 from 19, a person with knowledge of the proposal told USA TODAY Sports.

The person requested anonymity because he was not authorized to publicly discuss discussions between the league and the union.

The NBPA and its executive director, Michele Roberts, planned to review the proposal Monday at a post-All-Star weekend meeting in the Bahamas.

The league and union have had informal discussions about lowering the age limit, and NBA commissioner Adam Silver is on record saying the current 19-year-old age limit is not working for the league or college basketball.

This is the first step in formal negotiations to lower the age limit by the 2022 draft. The issue is collectively bargained between the NBA and NBPA, and both sides need to agree to any rule change.

Source: Jeff Zillgitt of USA TODAY Sports

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Sources: Bucks Interested in JR Smith, Buyout Unlikely

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The Milwaukee Bucks have interest in JR Smith, sources said, though Smith and the Cavs are not close on a buyout. There is very little incentive for Cleveland to buy him out, and at this stage in his life, NBA money is important to Smith.

Smith is guaranteed $3.9 million for next season and $15.7 million if he’s on Cleveland’s roster July 1. What this means for the Cavs is — there is great reason to hold on to him for the rest of the season, and then try to trade him before July 1. If they fail, then they either waive him by June 30, paying him the $3.9 million to walk, they take on his full contract with the hope of being able to trade it by the February deadline next season, or they keep him past July 1 in an effort to trade him by a late August deadline to “waive and stretch” his contract. In essence, this would be risking $12 million for an extra two months to trade him.

Source: Joe Vardon of The Athletic

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Report: Zion Williamson Day-to-Day with Right Knee Sprain

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NEWS: Zion Williamson was diagnosed with a Grade 1 right knee sprain. He is progressing as expected, and his status is day-to-day.

Source: Duke Basketball on Twitter

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