Six first-time All-Stars to make debut Feb. 15 in Los Angeles
NEW YORK, Feb. 3 –
New Jersey Nets guard Jason Kidd
, a seven-time NBA All-Star, and Shaquille O'Neal
of the Los Angeles Lakers, selected to his 11th All-Star Game, headline today's announcement of the reserves for the 2004 NBA All-Star Game, to be played on Sunday, Feb. 15 at STAPLES Center in Los Angeles.
The 14 players selected -- seven each from the Eastern and Western Conferences -- were chosen by a vote of the 29 NBA head coaches. The coaches were asked to vote for seven players in their respective conferences -- two guards, two forwards, one center and two players regardless of position. They were not permitted to vote for players from their own team.
Joining Kidd on the East team will be Boston's Paul Pierce and New Orleans' Baron Davis and first-time All-Stars Ron Artest of Indiana, Michael Redd of Milwaukee, Kenyon Martin New Jersey and Jamaal Magloire of New Orleans.
First-timers Sam Cassell of Minnesota and Andrei Kirilenko of Utah join O'Neal, Dallas' Dirk Nowitzki, Peja Stojakovic and Brad Miller of Sacramento and Seattle's Ray Allen on the West squad.
Previously selected, as starters for the East through the NBA All-Star 2004 Balloting Program were Detroit's Ben Wallace, Indiana's Jermaine O'Neal, Orlando's Tracy McGrady, Philadelphia's Allen Iverson and Toronto's Vince Carter.
Houston's Steve Francis and Yao Ming, Kobe Bryant of the Los Angeles Lakers, Minnesota's Kevin Garnett and San Antonio's Tim Duncan will start for the West.
The selections of Kirilenko (Russia), Magloire (Canada), Nowitzki (Germany) and Stojakovic (Serbia-Montenegro) along with voted-starters Duncan (U.S. Virgin Islands) and Yao (China), gives the 2004 All-Star Game six international players, tying the 2003 All-Star Game record for the most international All-Stars in one year.
Should any player be unable to participate in the All-Star Game due to injury, NBA Commissioner David Stern will select the replacement.
Rick Carlisle of the Indiana Pacers will coach the Eastern Conference All-Stars and Flip Saunders of the Minnesota Timberwolves will represent the Western Conference.
The NBA All-Star Game on Sunday, Feb. 15 will be broadcast live by TNT, Rogers Sportsnet and ESPN Radio at 8 p.m. ET. The game will also be telecast in 212 countries and broadcast in several languages on NBA.com.
For the second year in a row, NBA All-Stars will wear uniforms created just for the game. Last year, NBA All-Stars wore "Retro" uniforms from the 1988 All-Star Game, but this year the All-Stars will be outfitted in newly designed uniforms from Reebok –- created specifically for the 2004 NBA All-Star Game.
NBA.com will provide basketball fans with the opportunity to have their vote count toward selecting the MVP of the 53rd NBA All-Star Game, as a part of the site's exclusive NBA All-Star 2004 coverage.
Through the 2004 NBA All-Star Balloting program, which ran Nov. 13, 2003 through Jan. 18, 2004, fans had the opportunity to vote in more ways than ever. NBA All-Star Balloting expanded this season to include 17 languages on the NBA.com Network, downloadable ballots via Verizon Wireless and voting at Loews Cineplex Entertainment movie theaters along with Foot Locker, Circuit City and Champs Sports locations throughout the United States.
Sprite, America Online, Champs Sports, Reebok and 989 Sports also returned as balloting partners this year. These outlets were in addition to ballots that were distributed in all 28 NBA arenas. The balloting partners provided links to the NBA.com All-Star Ballot from their home pages.
NBA All-Star 2004 is a weeklong 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.
WESTERN CONFERENCE ALL-STARS
Head coach: Flip Saunders
EASTERN CONFERENCE ALL-STARS
Head coach: Rick Carlisle (Indiana)