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Blazers F LaMarcus Aldridge, G Damian Lillard Place In Top 10 At Their Positions In First 2014 All-Star Returns

Portland Trail Blazers forward LaMarcus Aldridge ranks eighth among Western Conference frontcourt players and guard Damian Lillard ranks 10th among Western Conference backcourt players in the first round of 2014 NBA All-Star returns.

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Portland Trail Blazers forward LaMarcus Aldridge and guard Damian Lillard both appeared among the leading vote-getters in the first round of 2014 All-Star ballot returns, which were released by the NBA on Thursday.

Aldridge placed eighth among Western Conference frontcourt players; Lillard placed 10th among Western Conference backcourt players. The top three frontcourt players and the top two backcourt players from each conference, as voted by the fans, will start in the 2014 All-Star Game, which is set for New Orleans on Feb. 16.

Here are the results from the first round of voting for both conferences.

Western Conference

1. Kevin Durant (OKC) 607,407
2. Dwight Howard (Hou) 295,120
3. Blake Griffin (LAC) 292,925
4. Kevin Love (Min) 275,506
5. Tim Duncan (SA) 217,271
6. Anthony Davis (NO) 149,579
7. Pau Gasol (LAL) 133,199
8. LaMarcus Aldridge (Por) 132,818
9. Andre Iguodala (GS) 109,745
10. Dirk Nowitzki (Dal) 89,093
11. Chandler Parsons (Hou) 77,179
12. DeMarcus Cousins (Sac) 60,923
13. David Lee (GS) 60,015
14. Kawhi Leonard (SA) 55,023
15. Omer Asik (Hou) 53,827

1. Kobe Bryant (LAL) 501,215
2. Chris Paul (LAC) 393,313
3. Stephen Curry (GS) 327,449
4. Jeremy Lin (Hou) 240,404
5. James Harden (Hou) 198,667
6. Russell Westbrook (OKC) 149,065
7. Tony Parker (SA) 112,423
8. Ricky Rubio (Min) 63,096
9. Steve Nash (LAL) 60,782
10. Damian Lillard (Por) 55,847

Eastern Conference

1. LeBron James (Mia) 609,336
2. Paul George (Ind) 489,335
3. Carmelo Anthony (NYK) 424,211
4. Roy Hibbert (Ind) 208,369
5. Chris Bosh (Mia) 156,364
6. Kevin Garnett (BKN) 102,825
7. Joakim Noah (Chi) 75,229
8. Jeff Green (Bos) 55,912
9. Luol Deng (Chi) 54,340
10. Tyson Chandler (NYK) 51,738
11. Andre Drummond (Det) 51,351
12. Carlos Boozer (Chi) 48,745
13. Paul Pierce (BKN) 45,145
14. Brook Lopez (BKN) 37,153
15. Josh Smith (Det) 32,025

1. Dwyane Wade (Mia) 396,279
2. Kyrie Irving (Cle) 365,712
3. Derrick Rose (Chi) 272,410
4. John Wall (Was) 124,851
5. Ray Allen (Mia) 99,464
6. Rajon Rondo (Bos) 80,889
7. Deron Williams (BKN) 44,282
8. George Hill (Ind) 42,536
9. Evan Turner (Phi) 33,605
10. Mario Chalmers (Mia) 32,996

Fans pick the starters; coaches pick the reserves. Aldridge, of course, made the squad as a reserve the last two seasons. Remember: the "guard," "forward" and "center" designations were removed from the ballot in 2013 in favor of broader "frontcourt" and "backcourt" categories.

Last year, Aldridge ranked 10th among Western Conference frontcourt players in the first round of fan ballot results.

If the voting closed today, the 2014 All-Star starters would be:

  • West: Chris Paul, Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant, Blake Griffin, Dwight Howard
  • East: Kyrie Irving, Dwyane Wade, Paul George, Carmelo Anthony, LeBron James

History has dictated that early voting trends tend to hold up throughout the process. Last year's West team was exactly the same as the five names listed above, although Minnesota Timberwolves forward Kevin Love has a shot at unseating Howard or Griffin.

Both Irving and George would be first-time starters if the voting holds in the East. They would replace 2013 starters Rajon Rondo and Kevin Garnett (Rondo wound up being an injury scratch and was replaced in the starting lineup by Chris Bosh).

-- Ben Golliver | | Twitter