LAKERS' STARTING FIVE NAMED TO 2013 ALL-STAR BALLOT

November 13, 2012 4:48 pm PST

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EL SEGUNDO – Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash, Dwight Howard, Pau Gasol and Metta World Peace were named to the 2013 All-Star ballot which was unveiled today during a special tip-off event in Houston, the Official Host City of NBA All-Star 2013.

Bryant, a starter in each of the last fourteen All-Star games, led all NBA players in voting in 2003 and 2011 and has led the Western Conference in All-Star balloting each of the last five seasons. Bryant, who has earned All-Star MVP honors four times (2002, 2007, 2009 and 2011), is tied with Hall of Famer Bob Pettit for the most All-Star MVP Awards in NBA history. A five-time NBA Champion, Bryant became the youngest person in NBA history to score 29,000 points on March 9, 2012 and is currently averaging 26.1 points, 5.7 rebounds and 4.1 assists.

Nash, an eight-time NBA All-Star (2002, 2003, 2005-2008, 2010, and 2012) was named as a starter on the Western Conference All-Star team in 2006 and 2010. The two-time NBA MVP (2004-2005, 2005-2006) currently ranks 5th on the NBA’s all-time assists list.

Howard, who led all players in voting last season, set an all-time NBA record in 2009 with more than 3.1 million votes. The six-time NBA All-Star (2007-12) and five time starter (2008-2012) joins Gasol, a four-time NBA All-Star (2006, 2009, 2010 and 2011) and World Peace, a 2004 Eastern Conference All-Star, on the ballot.

2013 NBA All-Star Balloting gives fans around the world the opportunity to vote daily for their favorite players as starters for the 2013 NBA All-Star Game in Houston. For the first time ever, NBA fans can vote via social media networks, including Facebook and Twitter, and Sina Weibo and Tencent QQ in China.

Twitter voting will allow fans to tweet a vote for one player each day throughout the All-Star balloting period. The tweet must include a player’s first and last name, along with hash tag #NBABALLOT. Facebook voting will allow fans to fill out one full ballot (three frontcourt and two guards from each conference) per day, through a custom application on Facebook.

There are several other ways fans can cast their votes as part of this season’s all-digital program including: in 11 languages on NBA.com/ASB, through SMS voting by texting the player's last name to 6-9-6-2-2 ("MYNBA") or by visiting NBA.com/ASB on any wireless device. Fans can vote for 10 different players per day, per phone number, via SMS voting by sending 10 separate SMS messages, each one with a different player's last name. Message and data rates may apply.

Balloting will conclude on Jan. 14, and starters will be announced live on TNT on Jan. 17, during a special one-hour pregame show at 7 p.m. ET featuring Ernie Johnson, Charles Barkley, Shaquille O’Neal and Kenny Smith. The special will air prior to TNT’s exclusive doubleheader featuring the Los Angeles Clippers at the Minnesota Timberwolves (8 p.m. ET) and the Miami Heat at the Los Angeles Lakers (10:30 p.m. ET).

The NBA All-Star ballot lists 120 players – 60 each from the Eastern and Western conferences – with 36 frontcourt and 24 guards from each conference comprising the list. Voters select three frontcourt and two guards from each conference. Previously, the ballot featured three positions with fans picking two guards, two forwards and a center.

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