It seems hard to believe with the current NBA season only a little over a month old, but the 2012 NBA All-Star starters for the Eastern and Western Conferences have already been announced. There is no surprise that Los Angeles Lakers superstar Kobe Bryant led the voting in the West with 1,555,479 votes. This will be Kobe’s 14th consecutive NBA All-Star game appearance which ties him with former Lakers Shaquille O’Neal, Karl Malone and Jerry West for most consecutive All-Star appearances.
The big news out of Los Angeles though is up-and-coming center Andrew Bynum getting his first nod as an All-Star and as a starter no less. This could be the first of many All-Star appearances and the big kid might take advantage of this situation as he will be matched up with superstar Dwight Howard.
With only Dwight Howard (lead vote-getter, 1,600,390 votes) being the only center in the league that can contend with Andrew Bynum (1,051,945 votes) and with Yao Ming recently retiring, the Lakers center is now the league’s best big man in the Western Conference and will represent the Lakeshow as the starting center for the West.
2012 NBA All-Star starters:
Guards: Kobe Bryant, Los Angeles Lakers; Chris Paul, Los Angeles Clippers
Forwards: Kevin Durant, Oklahoma City Thunder; Blake Griffin, Los Angeles Clippers
Center: Andrew Bynum, Los Angeles Lakers
Guards: Derrick Rose, Chicago Bulls; Dwyane Wade, Miami Heat
Forwards: LeBron James, Miami Heat; Carmelo Anthony, New York Knicks
Center: Dwight Howard, Orlando Magic
With the exception of two-time NBA scoring champion Kevin Durant, this will be an all Los Angeles starting lineup for the Western Conference. There is no question that there has been some tension between the Lakeshow and Lob City this season, but that All-Star lineup is about as talented as it have ever been and will be a lot of fun to watch come Fri. Feb. 24 in Orlando, Florida.
The All-Star reserves for both conferences will be named on Thurs. Feb. 9 on TNT. The question for the Lakers and Clippers next week will be whether or not Pau Gasol and DeAndre Jordan will get selected by the West head coach who is yet to be named. Some players that are likely to be named to the All-Star West reserves, or at least in the running, are Kevin Love (Minnesota Timberwolves), LaMarcus Aldridge (Portland Trail Blazers), Russell Westbrook (Oklahoma City Thunder), Marc Gasol (Memphis Grizzlies), Steve Nash (Phoenix Suns) and Paul Millsap (Utah Jazz).
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