Brooklyn Nets guard D’Angelo Russell has been named to replace injured Victor Oladipo of the Indiana Pacers in the Feb. 17 NBA All-Star Game in Charlotte.
It took an extra day to get it done, but for the first time in five years, the Brooklyn Nets have an All-Star on their roster.
On Friday, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver named Nets point guard D’Angelo Russell as an Eastern Conference reserve to replace Victor Oladipo of the Indiana Pacers, who was selected by the conference’s coaches but cannot play due to a season-ending knee injury sustained on Jan. 23.
Russell, 22, makes his first All-Star appearance in his fourth NBA season and his second with Brooklyn, which has enjoyed a remarkable midseason turnaround, going 20-7 in its last 27 games after an 8-18 start.
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The Nets enter February with a 28-25 record, good for sixth place in the East, five games behind the fourth-place Pacers and fifth-place Boston Celtics and two games clear of the seventh-place Miami Heat and 2½ ahead of the eighth-place Charlotte Hornets.
Brooklyn is 4½ games ahead of the Detroit Pistons, who are currently outside the playoff picture in ninth place.
Antetokounmpo and James were the top vote-getters in their respective conferences in the fan voting.
The All-Star Draft will be held next Thursday in advance of the Feb. 17 All-Star Game to be played at Spectrum Center in Charlotte.
Earlier this week, Brooklyn’s Jarrett Allen and Rodions Kurucs were selected to participate in All-Star Weekend as part of the Rising Stars Challenge to be played on Feb. 15. Allen will play for Team U.S., while Kurucs is on Team World.
The Nets have been campaigning for Joe Harris — currently third in the NBA in 3-point shooting — to be selected for the Three-Point Contest on All-Star Saturday Night, Feb. 16.
Five players are already confirmed for the contest, per CBSSports.com, including Charlotte natives Seth Curry of the Portland Trail Blazers and Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors, alomng with Buddy Hield of the Sacramento Kings, Damian Lillard of the Portland Trail Blazers and Dirk Nowitzki of the Dallas Mavericks.
Nowitzki is going to have a busy weekend ahead of him, as he was also named honorary coach for Team World in the Rising Stars Challenge and on Friday was added to the list of All-Star Game reserves along with Dwyane Wade of the Miami Heat by Silver, who added two roster spots for this year’s game to do so.
Russell becomes the 15th different Net to be named to the NBA All-Star Game. Eleven of the previous selections were one-time picks, while only three Nets have played in multiple All-Star Games — Jason Kidd with five and Vince Carter and Buck Williams with three each.
Nine other Nets were ABA All-Stars during the early years of the franchise from 1967-76, including Basketball Hall of Fame inductees Julius Erving (selected three times in three years as a Net) and Rick Barry (a two-time selection in two seasons with the team).