Josh Lewenberg: Kyle Lowry is a fan of the new All-Star format, even if the draft results aren't being released (he's confident they'll be leaked anyway). He said he's hoping to play with, not against, DeMar DeRozan. "I've got to play with my guy. We might have to make a trade or something."
Anthony Chiang: Goran Dragic on not being named All-Star: "I don’t understand this anymore because back in the day with the Suns, I had the statstics and they said our record is not good. This year we have a good record, and it’s not [enough]. So it is what it is."
A day after Russell Westbrook called his All-Star snub "outrageous," Paul George told ESPN's Rachel Nichols it was "awesome" to see his Thunder teammate support him, while also noting Westbrook is making George's future free-agency decision "easier" to make. "Russ is the reason why this decision is becoming even more easier to make, is the character Russ [has]," George said on Wednesday. "A stand-up guy, and he has his teammate's back."
"It was awesome for a teammate to have your back and to stand up," he said. "And to be honest, he should be a starter. He's been the MVP, been the best player at his position. He should've been a starter, but that's another story. But the fact Russ had my back, that's my guy forever, and it's more apparent what this decision needs to be made when it comes down to it."
Houston Rockets guard Chris Paul said he was "cool" with not being selected for the All-Star Game. His co-star and coach weren't so accepting of the snub. "I was amazed that people that should be watching games don't watch the games and see how important a guy is," Rockets coach Mike D'Antoni said. "He's for all the right things -- gave up space and personal accolades to make the team better. He did that and is still having one of his better years, a career year. It's perplexing."
"Second-best overall record in the NBA, No. 2 in the best conference in the league, [Paul] averages -- what? -- 19 [points] and nine assists. I mean, what are we rewarding?" Harden said after Wednesday's 104-97 win over the Dallas Mavericks. "What are we rewarding? We're winning and he's putting up the numbers. It's no question.
Joe Freeman: Lillard on All-Star berth: "It's not my first All-Star game. But I did have to make this one happen. Everybody knows that the last two years I felt like I should have made it and I didn't. But I just had to keep on playing, stay with it and stay positive."
Dwyane Wade: Big congrats @Kevin Love on making your 5th AllStar game. You’re one of the best that our game has to offer!
Joe Freeman: During a media availability about his All-Star selection, Damian Lillard was asked about Russell Westbrook's "complaining about getting snubbed" comments directed at him. Lillard's reply: "I respect Russ a lot. So it was kind of disappointing to see him say that because he's played against me, he's played against our team, he knows what I've accomplished. Not just this year, but over my career. So it was a little bit disappointing. But I know that I earned my spot this year."
Rockets coach Mike D'Antoni says he's "amazed" that Chris Paul was left off the All-Star team. "It's perplexing." Asked if games missed is a reasonable excuse, D'Antoni said, "Give me a break."
Jonathan Feigen: That D'Antoni reaction to Paul being left off the All-Star team not quite posted yet, but here's D'Antoni when told at least Paul will get some rest: “I thought the All-Star games they’ve been getting rest the last five years.”
Brian Seltzer: Inside locker room, Saric reacting to Rising Stars Challenge selection. “For me it means a lot.” Also said he felt sad for Simmons that he didn’t make it to All-Star Game itself.
Vincent Ellis: Andre Drummond's agent, Jeff Schwartz to the Free Press in a release: “This is a big miss by the coaches. Andre deserves to be an All-Star. ... I guess he does have to do back flips.”
Before the Heat was snubbed in All-Star selections, no team in 25 years had been in the top four of the Eastern Conference and not had an All-Star at the time of selections. And that left the Heat’s Hassan Whiteside perplexed. “You know, it’s confusing,” Whiteside said Wednesday of the fact that bunch of teams with worse records than Miami had players selected for the All-Star Game. “I get confused about it sometimes. Is it about stats? Or is it about winning? “Certain guys, they say, ‘Oh, he’s winning. His team’s winning, so we put him on there.’ Other guys, he’s got good stats but his team sucks. So what is it about? I just [need to] understand what it’s about.”
Hassan Whiteside believes it’s also a byproduct of the Heat’s lack of national television exposure. Miami has had only ESPN appearance this season, against San Antonio, and had another telecast (against the Knicks) replaced by a Boston-Minnesota game. Miami has had no TNT appearances this season. “It got a lot to do with it,” Whiteside said. “The NBA pushes teams. The NBA pushes guys. The media pushes people. There’s teams all got Christmas games that stink, so I’m not going to say what teams, but you all know those teams that shouldn’t be playing on Christmas. But a lot of NBA teams push guys into starting.”
Fred Katz: Billy Donovan said he was "really disappointed" Paul George didn't make All-Star: "When you talk about the 12 best players in the West, I have a hard time believing he’s not one of those guys. He’s played consistently enough. He’s arguably the best two-way player in the league."
Dave McMenamin: Last night Kevin Love said LeBron James hadn’t given him the assurance he’d be drafting him yet: “He’s going to try to assemble the best team possible. I mean, he probably has a future in that, so I assume he’ll put together a damn good team. But so will Steph. Those are two smart guys.”
Karl Anthony Towns is hopeful that he gets a chance to guard Jimmy Butler in the All-Star game if the T'Wolves All-Star duo gets split up in the new selection process. "The way the All-Star Game is structured this year, God knows, I may have to go out there and guard Jimmy," Towns said prior to Wednesday morning's shootaround. "That would be a lot of fun. I'd have a blast with that one. That's the only thing I'm making as a first-year pick, if Jimmy gets the ball, he's on the other side, I want to guard him."
Victor Oladipo’s phone buzzed Tuesday. It was Pacers President Kevin Pritchard, the executive who orchestrated the move that brought Oladipo and Domantas Sabonis to Indy last summer. He had the honor of alerting Oladipo that he was voted an All-Star reserve by NBA head coaches. For the first time in his five years as a pro, he would participate in the game showcasing the world’s best basketball players.
“Fitting that he would call me first,” Victor Oladipo said Wednesday morning. “It’s awesome. It was a great moment for me. It was just special, just hearing from him and hearing his words and everything like that was a special moment – something I’ll never forget.”
"It's pretty outrageous," Rockets general manager Daryl Morey said. "I think it was based on simple games missed. It's similar to honors in the past where new standards are getting applied selectively. "Chris, you have to look at the impact in those games. We're 18-0 in Chris and James and Clint. Obviously, he was the primary guy driving winning when he was playing and James was out (going 4-3.) If you look at with winning as the focus, the wins Chris made happen for us, even in a shorter window, were more than enough to get selected."
Kyle Lowry will now earn $200K if he plays in 23 more games. Lowry has an All-Star bonus in his contract that is tied in with games played (65). Lowry also has a $500K bonus if the Raptors reach the Conference Finals and an additional $500K if Toronto earns a spot in the NBA Finals.
Thunder forward Paul George was among the most notable snubs when the 2018 All-Star Game reserves were announced Tuesday, an omission that left teammate Russell Westbrook stunned and frustrated. "Unbelievable. I think it's just outrageous, in my opinion," Westbrook said, demonstrably closing his eyes and shaking his head. "I don't know who else made the team but got four people from one team, you've got guys complaining about getting snubbed until they get in, you've got guys just talking about it all the time. "But the guys that deserve it -- should be in -- are not. I just don't understand. Doesn't make any sense."
"Guy leads the league in steals, competes every night, top two at his position. Don't make any sense, regardless of anything else," Westbrook, who was named to his seventh All-Star Game, said of George. "If you're going by All-Stars, there are certain All-Stars in this league. Everybody's not an All-Star. Just because you get voted in, doesn't mean you're an All-Star. I just think it's outrageous. But you know, it is what it is."
Royce Young: Carmelo Anthony on Paul George not making the All-Star team, as well as his own All-Star streak coming to an end: “Coming here I knew this would be a sacrifice, a full sacrifice for me not a half sacrifice and this is part of that sacrifice.”
Victor Oladipo: Wow my first all-star game. Words can’t describe how humbled I am to represent the Indiana Pacers as an All-Star in this years all star game. I would like to thank God first and for everything he has done for me. Thank you for the ups and the downs. I would like to thank my teammates because without them none of this will be possible. Thank you to the Indiana Pacers coaching staff, medical staff, management, and day to day employees for all they have done for me since I become a pacer!. Thank you to the fans who voted for me in the fan vote.
"There's my guy right there that helped me get there & that's Dwane Casey" @Klow7 with nothing but love for Coach. #WeTheNorth
Anthony Slater: Klay Thompson jokes that he will "request a trade" if Steph Curry doesn't get him at the All-Star game and then says he wishes last pick was publicized because it would be "hilarious" making fun of them
Mark Medina: Klay Thompson on being All-Stars again with Steph, Durant and Draymond: “It’s special and an honor to be there. I can’t wait, especially to share with my teammates.”
Marc D'Amico: Brad Stevens on Al Horford being named as an All-Star: “Totally deserved. It’s good to see a guy who might not have the ‘stats’ be recognized for his impact.”
Michael C. Wright: Per Elias, SA's streak of 20 straight seasons with an All-Star breaks a tie with the Lakers for longest streak since the merger. The Lakers 19-season streak went from 1996-97 through 2015-16.
Al Horford: Humbled, Blessed and Grateful for the All-Star selection. Bendecido y muy agradecido por la selección al juego de estrellas. La Gloria a Dios!
Jerry Zgoda: KAT says he learned he's an All Star when he came out of film session in Portland & say his dad, his mom & his girlfriend waiting. That apparently isn't normal procedure on road trips
Jamal Crawford: S/o @Louis Williams . You're an all-star who just isn't playing in the all-star game. Real recognizes real. #respect.
Royce Young: This is the first time since 2010 Carmelo Anthony is not an All-Star, breaking an eight season streak.
Bobby Marks: The Paul Millsap $500K bonus for earning a spot on the All-Star team will now be deemed unlikely at the end of the season. Denver will see the Millsap cap hit adjusted to $30.76, $29.23 and $30M (team option) in June.
Shams Charania: Boston's Al Horford has been selected to the NBA Eastern Conference All-Star reserve team, league sources tell Yahoo.
Adrian Wojnarowski: OKC's Russell Westbrook and San Antonio's LaMarcus Aldridge have been selected to the Western Conference All-Star reserves, league sources tell ESPN.
Chris Haynes: ESPN Sources: Wizards guard John Wall has been selected to be a Eastern Conference All-Star reserve.
Chris Haynes: ESPN Sources: Minnesota forward Karl-Anthony Towns has been voted in to make his first All-Star appearance as a Western Conference reserve.
Joe Vardon: Kevin Love made the All Star team and was invited to participate in the 3 point contest, per league source. Story coming
Vincent Goodwill: In a bit of a surprise, Pistons center Andre Drummond didn't make East All Star team as a reserve, according to sources. Toronto's Kyle Lowry is in
Shams Charania: New York Knicks' Kristaps Porzingis has been selected to the NBA Eastern Conference All-Star reserve team, league sources tell Yahoo.
Shams Charania: Portland's Damian Lillard has been selected to the NBA Western Conference All-Star reserve team, league sources tell Yahoo.
Chris Haynes: ESPN Sources: Golden State Warriors to get four All-Stars. Draymond Green and Klay Thompson voted in by coaches as reserves.
Chris Haynes: ESPN Sources: Minnesota guard Jimmy Butler has been voted by coaches to be a Western Conference All-Star reserve.
On Tuesday, Beal, the Washington Wizards shooting guard, learned that he has been selected as a first-time all-star by Eastern Conference head coaches, according to a person familiar with the situation. Beal, who shoots 36.8 percent from the arc, will also compete in the Three-Point Shootout held during All-Star Weekend in Los Angeles on Feb. 17. The achievement marks an overdue reward for Beal, a rising star in the league.
Royce Young: Paul George on wanting to be named an All-Star tonight: “Absolutely, but it’s not the end of the world. It’s significant because it’s home, to play back at home, but it’s not the end of the world if it doesn’t happen.” pic.twitter.com/GFUjz6cfeK
Logan Murdock: Kevin Durant on the new All-Star format: "I am excited to see who's going to be what team, who's going to pick who. But once figure that out, I'm sure it'll be just like a regular all-star game. But I think this year guys are going to play harder and it'll be a better game."
Eddie Sefko: Rick Carlisle on voting for WC all-star reserves: "It's the most difficult I've ever seen it from the standpoint of so many deserving guys at all positions. Some guys who are deserving are most likely going to be left out. I just know the West is packed with great players."
"Obviously there's a lot of people that are in favor of watching it live and there's also people that understand the reasoning behind why it's not this year," Curry said. "I'm sure as this new format unfolds it'll happen. I've always been a proponent of protecting the players. I know that's the unpopular position, but in this day and age, we're all grown men, we're all All-Stars. We can handle it. You want to see how the whole format goes the first time. It sounds great that there won't be any GIFs, so you won't be ridiculed."
"I'm putting together an assistant GM staff that can help me get my draft board and know how to respond if he picks a certain way," Curry said. "I've got my brother, and my pops, and maybe "I'll have to ask Riley (his five-year old daughter) to see how she feels."
Rockets guard Chris Paul, the president of the National Basketball Players' Association, would not share his position or the union's on the idea of having the draft of All-Star teams to be made by captains Steph Curry and LeBron James public. NBA commissioner Adam Silver has been opposed, despite the clamoring to have the selections Asked if he expressed his opinion, Paul said, "Yup." Asked if he would share what he said, Paul said, "Nope."
Paul is considered as influential among union membership as any player, but would not say if the Players' Association was opposed to making the selections public, or even televising them, or if it followed his recommendations when the format was changed. "I don't know," Paul said. "They know (his opinion.)"
It’s safe to say Kristaps Porzingis feels the fans and media were wrong for not voting him as an All-Star starter. “Everybody has their own opinion. Fans are one thing. It is what it is,” he said. “There are a lot of things I could have done better also. It is what it is.” Porzingis can still be voted in by the coaches as a reserve, with the results announced Tuesday. “We’ll see. I would hope so. In my mind, I deserve it,” he said. “All I got to do is play good and win games and the results will take care of itself. I shouldn’t be too worried about who is going to vote for me and who is not going to vote for me.”
Scott Kushner: DeMarcus Cousins, starter, on which All-Star side he would prefer to be on: “I honestly don’t even understand the format I’m just showing up. I don’t know who I’m playing with.”
Eric Nehm: I asked Giannis Antetokounmpo if he wanted to be Team LeBron James or Team Stephen Curry. His response: "The only thing I'm thinking about is to not get picked last. I don't care who picks me."
March 21, 2023 | 9:20 pm EDT Update
Thunder 'open-minded' to SGA playing in back-to-backs?
Joe Mussatto: Mark Daigneault said the Thunder is “open-minded” to Shai Gilgeous-Alexander playing on back-to-backs moving forward (like the upcoming one Thursday/Friday.) Daigneault said SGA has responded well from abdominal strain: “The back to backs are more on the table now when they were then.”
Neither Ayton nor Durant made the trip to Los Angeles. Durant is scheduled for a re-evaluation later this month.
“We have some things to clean up,” Suns All-Star guard Devin Booker said. “We know roles are going to change when KD comes back, but polishing everything up before he comes back is important, too.”
Scott Agness: #Pacers Tyrese Haliburton (right ankle sprain) has been upgraded to questionable. Chris Duarte (sore left ankle) is also questionable for Wednesday at Toronto.
March 21, 2023 | 7:58 pm EDT Update
Damian Lillard not interested in rebuilding with Portland
NBACentral: Damian Lillard says he’s not interested in rebuilding “That’s not what I’m interested in. That’s what the frustrating part of it is. Talking about what’s gonna happen next season. And us ‘building’. That’s not what I’m here to do especially at this stage of my career”
Coach Darvin Ham said this extended push hasn’t left his team mentally fatigued in any noticeable ways. He’s mostly seen the opposite. “It’s caused them to come to the game on high alert and high awareness,” he said. “Just having something to play for. You’d be surprised how comfortable guys are with that as opposed to having to play a meaningless game. The fact that these games carry so much weight, I think, is causing our guys to lock in more. I don’t see any stress. I just see guys figuring it out because they want to be a part of this team getting into the postseason and making a run. “So the stress, the anxiety, I don’t see that. My coaching staff and I, we talked about that this morning, they don’t see that from our players. I see a bit of hunger.”