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NBA Expands All-Star Ballot to Include All Players

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The NBA expands its All-Star Balloting process to include all players. Claverophiles everywhere rejoice.

Steve Dykes

For the first time since the inception of the NBA All-Star game in 1951 the All-Star ballot will expand to include all players. The NBA announcement:

The NBA is expanding the All-Star ballot to include all players, and pushing back the start of voting so fans can better consider their choices.

Voting for the Feb. 15 game in New York will open Dec. 11. It traditionally began this week, when teams aren't even 10 games into their seasons.

The ballot on NBA.com will for the first time feature every player in the league. It formerly included only 60 players per conference who had been selected by a media panel.

Fans will continue to vote for three front court players and two guards to start for each conference. The online ballot will be updated daily to include players who have newly signed or been called up from the NBA Development League.

"Our players are the most exciting athletes in the world," president of basketball operations Rod Thorn said Thursday in a statement. "Our choice to include all NBA players is both a tribute to their skills and achievements, and another way to engage our fans in the full experience of NBA All-Star by giving them every option."

The other major U.S. pro sports leagues use ballots featuring set player pools.

All-Star voting is sponsored by Sprint. It concludes at the end of the day Jan. 19.

The NBA All-Star game was the brainchild of then NBA President Maurice Podoloff, NBA publicity director Haskell Cohen and Boston Celtics owner Walter A. Brown. The first All Star game was held in the Boston Garden. This year's All-Star game will also be at Boston Garden.

Portland Trail Blazers currently field 3 players that have been on the All-Star team, LaMarcus Aldridge (3 times), Damian Lillard, and Chris Kaman.

The online voting will begin Thursday, Dec. 11th on NBA.com, NBA mobile apps, social media and through text messaging.