Plenty of All-Star Game news is breaking at the moment. The most serious announcement comes from Western Conference starter Anthony Davis via NBA.com:
After careful thought and consideration, I've decided I will not be participating in this year's NBA All-Star competitions. I want to thank the fans for voting me into the All-Star game and I am sorry I will not be able to play.
While I'm disappointed that I won't be able to compete this weekend, I'm still very excited about the opportunity to be a part of the All-Star events in New York and celebrate our game with some of the NBA's greatest figures.
More than anything, I am anxious to get healthy and back on the court with my teammates after the All-Star break.
Davis is recovering from a right shoulder sprain.
In other news, Western Conference Head Coach Steve Kerr of the Golden State Warriors has named James Harden and Klay Thompson as replacements in the starting lineup for injured players Kobe Bryant and Blake Griffin. Harden could be considered a no-brainer but Thompson's appointment stands on shakier ground. As the San Francisco Chronicle illuminates, teammate Stephen Curry has no problem with Thompson's promotion:
For our coaching staff to be handling the Western Conference and to be rewarding us for the wins we've had in the first part of the season, I think it's only right that coach gets to pick his guy and reward Klay for what he's done this season.
The obvious loser in the shuffle: Portland Trail Blazers forward LaMarcus Aldridge. With Davis bowing out, however, Kerr will need another replacement in the starting lineup. He could go old school and name Tim Duncan, but having passed over Aldridge twice, the weight of the Portland forward's accomplishment has to count for something, or so you'd think. Stay tuned...
Update: Tim MacMahon of ESPN.com has Dirk Nowitzki taking Davis' place on the Western Conference squad:
Source: Dirk will be named to All-Star team to replace Anthony Davis. It's the 13th selection of his career.— Tim MacMahon (@espn_macmahon) February 12, 2015
Update: Steve Kerr is said to be deciding between Aldridge and Kevin Durant for the starting nod.
Steve Kerr tells @NBAonESPNRadio he's still deciding between Kevin Durant or LaMarcus Aldridge to start for injured Anthony Davis. BUT ...— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) February 12, 2015