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NBA All-Star Friday Preview and Open Thread

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Use this post as your All-Star Friday open thread.

The NBA All-Star weekend gets kicked off today with three events taking place in Los Angeles.  First up it's the D-League All-Star game which will tip-off at 5pm at the Los Angeles Convention Center , on Center Court at NBA All-Star Jam Session. The game will air live on NBA TV.  Heat rookie Dexter Pittman was selected to play for the East Team but will have to sit out after having knee surgery earlier this week.  Here are the rosters:

NBA D-League All-Star East Team: Chris Johnson (Dakota Wizards), Ivan Johnson and Garrett Temple (Erie BayHawks), Walker Russell Jr. (Fort Wayne Mad Ants), Othyus Jeffers, Courtney Sims and Curtis Stinson (Iowa Energy), DeShawn Sims (Maine Red Claws), Patrick Ewing Jr. and Dexter Pittman (Sioux Falls Skyforce).

NBA D-League All-Star West Team: Marcus Cousin (Austin Toros), Trey Johnson (Bakersfield Jam), Shane Edwards (New Mexico Thunderbirds), Jeff Adrien and Mustafa Shakur (Rio Grande Valley Vipers), Joe Alexander and Sean Williams (Texas Legends), Larry Owens and Zabian Dowdell (Tulsa 66ers) and Orien Greene (Utah Flash).

 

The next event is the 2011 BBVA NBA All-Star Celebrity Game.  This is scheduled to start at 7pm and is also taking place at the Jam Session Center Court, inside the L.A. Convention Center.  It will air live on ESPN.  Each team has an appointed ‘general manager', with ESPN basketball dude Bill Simmons acting as one and comedian Jimmy Kimmel serving as the other.  Here is a list of some of the participants:

Magic Johnson (NBA legend and Hall of Famer), Justin Bieber (pop artist), Scottie Pippen (NBA legend and Hall of Famer), Bill Walton (NBA legend and Hall of Famer), AC Green (NBA legend), B.J. Armstrong (NBA legend), Chris Mullin (ESPN Analyst and NBA legend), Jalen Rose (ESPN Analyst and NBA legend), Jimmy Kimmel ("Jimmy Kimmel Live!"), Ty Burrell ("Modern Family"), Rob Kardashian ("Keeping Up with the Kardashians"), Zach Levi ("Chuck"), Jason Alexander ("Curb Your Enthusiasm"), Common (Just Wright) and Bill Simmons (ESPN.com columnist).

 

Closing out the evenings activities is the T-Mobile Rookie Challenge & Youth Jam.  This game has the top NBA rookies locking horns with the leagues top sophomores and will tip-off at 9pm from the Staples Center and air live on TNT.  Last season's Rookie of the Year and Rookie Challenge MVP Tyreke Evans, of the Sacramento Kings, will not play due to a foot injury.

ROOKIE TEAM:

Coaches: Mike Budenholzer - San Antonio Spurs, Amar'e Stoudemire - New York Knicks, Kevin McHale - NBA TV/ TNT basketball analyst

Roster: Eric Bledsoe (L.A. Clippers), DeMarcus Cousins (Sacramento Kings), Derrick Favors (New Jersey Nets), Landry Fields (New York Knicks), Blake Griffin (L.A. Clippers), Wesley Johnson (Minnesota Timberwolves), Greg Monroe (Detroit Pistons), Gary Neal (San Antonio Spurs), John Wall (Washington Wizards).

SOPHOMORE TEAM:

Coaches: Lawrence Frank - Boston Celtics, Carmelo Anthony - Denver Nuggets, Steve Kerr - TNT NBA basketball analyst

Roster: DeJuan Blair (San Antonio Spurs), DeMar DeRozan (Toronto Raptors), Stephen Curry (Golden State Warriors), Taj Gibson (Chicago Bulls), James Harden (Oklahoma City Thunder), Jrue Holiday (Philadelphia 76ers), Serge Ibaka (Oklahoma City Thunder), Brandon Jennings (Milwaukee Bucks), Wesley Matthews (Portland Trail Blazers)