NBA All-Star starters were announced on Thursday night. Donovan Mitchell was not one of them. He will have to wait to find out whether he makes his fifth straight All-Star team.
Tyrese Haliburton of the Indiana Pacers and Damian Lillard of the Milwaukee Bucks were selected as the two Eastern Conference backcourt starters ahead of Mitchell. Jayson Tatum (Boston Celtics), Giannis Antetokounmpo (Bucks), and Joel Embiid (Philadelphia 76ers) round out the starting lineup for the East in the frontcourt.
The starters were selected by 50% fan vote, 25% media vote, and 25% NBA player vote. The reserves will be selected entirely by the head coaches. The reserves will be announced on Thursday, Feb. 1 before the Los Angeles Lakers and Celtics game on TNT.
Mitchell will likely end up making the team as a reserve. He’s had an incredible run and is partially responsible for keeping the Cleveland Cavaliers’ season on the rails after it seemed destined to fall apart after the Darius Garland and Evan Mobley injuries. Mitchell is averaging 27.6 points with a 53.3 effective field goal percentage with career highs in assists (6.2) and rebounds (5.4) per contest.
Jarrett Allen also hopes to hear his name called next Thursday. Unlike Mitchell, Allen has only an outside chance of making the roster. While Allen has had a strong month and a half of play, 14.9 points and 10.3 rebounds typically aren’t good enough counting stats to make the team. Especially in a crowded pool of players who have more gaudy stat lines.
The All-Star game is returning to an East vs. West format for the first time in six years. All-Star weekend will take place in Indianapolis from Feb. 16 - 18.