NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Kristaps Porzingis has graduated the Rising Stars game to the main event at All-Star weekend.
The Knicks big man has been selected as a reserve to the NBA All-Star Game, the league announced Tuesday. It is the third-year player’s first All-Star selection.
Following the September trade of Carmelo Anthony to the Oklahoma City Thunder, Porzingis, who will miss Tuesday night’s game against the Golden State Warriors with a knee injury, stepped into the role of leading man with the Knicks this season. He is averaging 23.3 points, 6.7 rebounds, 2.3 blocks and 0.8 steals per game.
Klay Thompson and Draymond Green were also chosen as reserves Tuesday, giving the defending NBA champions a record-tying four All-Stars for the second straight year.
The Minnesota Timberwolves and Washington Wizards also had two reserves selected, and they will go into the pool of players that Curry and fellow captain LeBron James can draft to comprise the teams for the Feb. 18 game in Los Angeles. Their rosters will be unveiled Thursday.
Minnesota’s Jimmy Butler and Karl-Anthony Towns were chosen from the Western Conference along with Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook, San Antonio’s LaMarcus Aldridge and Portland’s Damian Lillard.
Besides Porzingis, the rest of the Eastern Conference reserves were Washington’s John Wall and Bradley Beal, Boston’s Al Horford, Cleveland’s Kevin Love, Toronto’s Kyle Lowry and Indiana’s Victor Oladipo.
The NBA announced the starters last week for the All-Star Game, which will be played Feb. 18 in Los Angeles. Moving away from the traditional East-vs.-West format, the Cavaliers’ LeBron James and the Warriors’ Stephen Curry — the top vote-getters in each conference — will serve as captains and draft their teams from a pool of All-Star selections. The rosters will be unveiled Thursday.
Other starters voted in are Milwaukee’s Giannis Antetokounmpo, Toronto’s DeMar DeRozan, Boston’s Kyrie Irving, Philadelphia’s Joel Embiid, Golden State’s Kevin Durant, Houston’s James Harden, and New Orleans’ Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins.
(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)