By Official Release
Posted Feb 10 2009 12:02AM
Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard, this year's leading vote-getter in the NBA All-Star Balloting program presented by T-Mobile with 3,150,181 votes, became the first player in balloting history to crack the 3 million-vote ceiling. Howard, who is making his third All-Star appearance, will start as the Eastern Conference's center for the second time in his career.
|Upon learning about his selection as an All-Star Game starter, an appreciative Dwight Howard turned his attention back to his Orlando Magic brethren, writes NBA.com's Art Garcia. Read Full Article|
Through the 2009 NBA All-Star Balloting program, fans worldwide were responsible for voting in the starters for the 58th NBA All-Star Game, which will be played in Phoenix on Sunday, Feb. 15. The game will air live (8 p.m. ET) on TNT, ESPN Radio and in more than 200 countries and territories worldwide. The NBA All-Star Game was played in Phoenix in both 1975 and 1995.
Four other starters for this year's All-Star Game each eclipsed the previous record of 2,558,278 votes received by Houston's Yao Ming in 2004-05: Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (2,940,823), Los Angeles guard Kobe Bryant (2,805,397), Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade (2,741,413) and San Antonio forward Tim Duncan (2,578,168).
Joining Howard, James and Wade in the Eastern Conference starting lineup are Boston Celtics forward Kevin Garnett (2,066,833), last year's top vote-getter and the 2003 All-Star MVP, and Detroit Pistons guard Allen Iverson, the 2001 and 2005 All-Star Game MVP. James, who was the leading vote-getter in 2006-07 as well as the 2006 and 2008 All-Star Game MVP, and Wade each will make his fifth midseason classic appearance. Iverson will appear in his ninth All-Star Game. Among active players, Garnett's 12th All-Star selection ranks second to Phoenix Suns center Shaquille O'Neal (14).
WESTERN CONFERENCE STARTERS
Bryant, the youngest All-Star in NBA history in 1998 as well as a two-time All-Star Game MVP (2002, 2007), and Duncan, who is making his 11th appearance and was the co-MVP along with Shaquille O'Neal of the 2000 All-Star Game, are joined in the Western Conference starting lineup by New Orleans Hornets guard Chris Paul (2,134,798), Phoenix Suns forward Amar'e Stoudemire (1,460,429) and Houston Rockets center Yao Ming (2,532,958). Paul will make his second All-Star Game appearance; Stoudemire his fourth; and Yao his sixth.
In selecting the reserves, the 30 NBA head coaches NBA head coaches must vote for seven players within their conference, including two guards, two forwards, a center and two players regardless of position. Coaches are not permitted to vote for players on their team. After the coaches select the reserves, if a player is unable to participate in the All-Star Game, NBA Commissioner David Stern will select a replacement.
Los Angeles Lakers Head Coach Phil Jackson and the Lakers coaching staff earned the honor to coach the Western Conference All-Stars by clinching the best winning percentage in the conference through games of Feb. 1. The Eastern Conference Coach is yet to be determined. Last year's East All-Star coach -- Boston's Doc Rivers -- is not eligible to coach this year.
Howard, James, Bryant, Wade, Duncan and the rest of year's All-Star participants will join members of the NBA Family for the NBA Cares All-Star Day of Service on Friday, Feb. 13. The volunteers will participate in one of three projects in the Phoenix community.
As the presenting partner of the 2009 NBA All-Star Balloting program, and in support of the NBA's season-long effort to better the various communities in Phoenix, T-Mobile will donate $1 for every ballot cast on t-zones, T-Mobile's wireless Web portal, to help the youth of Phoenix. The week leading up to the 58th NBA All-Star Game will feature a full slate of community-enhancing activities and fan festivals, such as NBA All-Star Jam Session presented by adidas and the T-Mobile Rookie Challenge & Youth Jam on Friday, Feb. 13.
In conjunction with All-Star Balloting, 2K Sports will give fans the opportunity to experience Phoenix and the best of basketball by entering the NBA 2K9 Sweepstakes for a chance to win a trip to NBA All-Star 2009 and to have their likeness as a digitized player incorporated in next year's game, NBA 2K10.
NBA All-Star 2009 is a week-long celebration that enables fans to experience the thrill of the world's greatest athletes playing the game they love and features a full slate of community-enhancing activities and fan festivals such as NBA All-Star Jam Session presented by adidas.
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|2009 NBA ALL-STAR BALLOTING|
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