The Brooklyn Nets will have their two stars represent the borough at NBA All-Star Game in Salt Lake City on February 19. To make things sweeter, barring Kevin Durant’s availability, Brooklyn’s 7-11 duo will be starting in the NBA’s biggest annual event.
Both Durant and Kyrie Irving have been named NBA All-Star starters. The announcement came on Thursday evening through an NBA on TNT broadcast. To round out the Eastern Conference starters: Giannis Antetokounmpo, Jayson Tatum, and Donovan Mitchell.
The honors for Durant and Irving mark the first time in Nets franchise history the team has had two players to be selected to start multiple All-Star games. For Durant, it will mark his 13th All-Star selection while Irving collects his eighth appearance.
Durant, out with a sprained MCL, has said he hopes to play in the game.
They join Jason Kidd (2008), Vince Carter (2005), Kenny Anderson (1994) and Derrick Coleman (1994) as players selected to start an All-Star game in Nets history. Durant is also one of four players in Nets NBA history to earn three or more All-Star Game selections, joining Jason Kidd (five), Vince Carter (three) and Buck Williams, and is the third Net to be selected to three straight All-Star games, joining Carter (2005-07) and Kidd (2002-04).
The team captains — James and Antetokounmpo — will make their picks in a live, televised pregame segment shortly before the game begins in Salt Lake City. In the past, the captains picked a week or two in advance of All-Star weekend.
Although Durant was not available post-game, he tweeted out his thanks to the fans...
Thanks to all the @nba fans who voted me in as a starter, thanks to my peers around the league as well….13 of them thangs, shit doesn’t get old.— Kevin Durant (@KDTrey5) January 27, 2023
Both Irving and Jacque Vaughn commented on the honor post-game.
“We chose to address the team about the expectations of winning after the basketball game, but we also chose to show gratitude, and to show a little bit of joy, saying those guys deserve to be All-Stars. 13-time, eight-time, pretty impressive. So we celebrated that after the game as well,” said the head coach.
Kyrie was asked if he was grateful for the selection.
“More than grateful. I don’t take any of these accomplishments for granted, it is my eighth one. Hopefully be hitting double digits soon, just keeping a high level of play. I’m just grateful for the people at home, I would not be here without y’all. Y’all voted me in. I’m ready to give a show,” he said, referring to fans.
“Just shows the community power, what I’ve been able to build over time, international community building, obviously this community here in America. I feel like I’ve put in enough work to be deserving this year and I think I just want to let that speak for itself, let that work speak for itself.”
There’s also a chance (and an increasing one based on his recent play) that Nic Claxton could be named to the game as well. All-Star reserves will be announced on Feb. 2.
For the Western Conference, Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James has been named Captain. To round out the starters out West: Stephen Curry, Luka Doncic, Nikola Jokic, and Zion Williamson.
- Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving Selected as All-star Game Starters - Brooklyn Nets
- Nets superstars Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving both voted as All-Stars - Mark W. Sanchez - New York Post
- LeBron James, Giannis Antetokounmpo voted as All-Star captains - Tim Bontemps - ESPN