NEW YORK, Dec. 14, 2006 – Yao Ming of the Houston Rockets and Kobe Bryant of the Los Angeles Lakers lead the Western Conference, while LeBron James of the Cleveland Cavaliers and Allen Iverson of the Philadelphia 76ers lead the Eastern Conference in votes received after the first returns of 2007 NBA All-Star Balloting presented by T-Mobile.

Through the 2007 NBA All-Star Balloting program, NBA fans from around the globe are responsible for voting in the starters for the 56th NBA All-Star Game, which will be played in Las Vegas on Sunday, Feb. 18. The game will air live on TNT, ESPN Radio and in more than 200 countries and territories worldwide.

Yao leads all players with 836,392 votes. The Minnesota Timberwolves’ Kevin Garnett leads all Western Conference forwards with 453,536 votes, followed by San Antonio’s Tim Duncan (423,228). Bryant (720,375) and the Houston Rockets’ Tracy McGrady (668,130) lead all Western Conference guards.

James leads all Eastern Conference players with 808,570 votes, followed by Iverson (595,200). The Toronto Raptors’ Chris Bosh (304,624) is second to James among Eastern Conference forwards. Miami’s Shaquille O’Neal leads all Eastern Conference centers with 522,815 votes, followed by the Orlando Magic’s Dwight Howard (415,708).

Fans have the opportunity to vote at all NBA arenas, in 20 languages on NBA.com, on AOL.com/nba, at 1,250 T-Mobile-owned retail locations and at t-zones using T-Mobile service or wap.nba.com for any wireless carrier. Fans will be able to vote at several locations in Las Vegas, the host city of NBA All-Star 2007, including the Las Vegas Convention Center, Fremont Street and the Thomas & Mack Center. For the first time, 13 NBA team arenas will also carry a Spanish-language version of the ballot.

The leaders of both the Eastern and Western Conference players for the first returns of the 2007 NBA All-Star voting program are attached:

2007 NBA ALL-STAR BALLOTING

EASTERN CONFERENCE

Forwards: LeBron James (Cleveland) 808,570; Chris Bosh (Toronto) 304,624; Jermaine O’Neal (Indiana) 258,139, Paul Pierce (Boston) 187,138; Grant Hill (Orlando) 168,695; Rasheed Wallace (Detroit) 144,228; Andre Iguodala (Philadelphia) 136, 785; Emeka Okafor (Charlotte) 98,502; Tayshaun Prince (Detroit) 93,514; Chris Webber (Philadelphia) 88,066.

Guards: Allen Iverson (Philadelphia) 595,200; Dwyane Wade (Miami) 586,679; Vince Carter (New Jersey) 433,363; Gilbert Arenas (Washington) 225,923; Jason Kidd (New Jersey) 190,385; Chauncey Billups (Detroit) 109,687; Stephon Marbury (New York) 107,219; Michael Redd (Milwaukee) 97,394; Joe Johnson (Atlanta) 78,680; Steve Francis (New York) 76,210.

Centers: Shaquille O'Neal (Miami) 522,815; Dwight Howard (Orlando) 415,708; Ben Wallace (Chicago) 216,443; Alonzo Mourning (Miami) 65,255; Andrew Bogut (Milwaukee) 46,178; Zaza Pachulia (Atlanta) 39,921; Zydrunas Ilgauskas (Cleveland) 38,590; Nenad Krstic (New Jersey) 33,459; Samuel Dalembert (Philadelphia) 30,744; Nazr Mohammed (Detroit) 30,078.

WESTERN CONFERENCE

Forwards: Kevin Garnett (Minnesota) 453,536; Tim Duncan (San Antonio) 423,228; Dirk Nowitzki (Dallas) 405,613; Carmelo Anthony (Denver) 364,419; Shane Battier (Houston) 265,340; Lamar Odom(L.A. Lakers) 155,289; Shawn Marion (Phoenix) 130,710; Josh Howard (Dallas) 118,399; Carlos Boozer (Utah) 113,289; Pau Gasol (Memphis) 100,192.

Guards: Kobe Bryant (L.A. Lakers) 720,375; Tracy McGrady (Houston) 668,130; Steve Nash (Phoenix) 432,083; Chris Paul (New Orleans/OKC) 156,801; Jason Terry (Dallas) 126,648; Manu Ginobili (San Antonio) 125,076; Tony Parker (San Antonio) 118,417; Ray Allen (Seattle) 111,841; Jerry Stackhouse (Dallas) 104,308; Baron Davis (Golden State) 93,777.

Centers: Yao Ming (Houston) 836,392; Amaré Stoudemire (Phoenix) 281,051; Erick Dampier (Dallas) 118,557; Mehmet Okur (Utah) 102,760; Marcus Camby (Denver) 64,082; Brad Miller (Sacramento) 33,376; Francisco Elson (San Antonio) 33,161; Chris Kaman (L.A. Clippers) 32,151; Chris Mihm (L.A. Lakers) 31,883; Tyson Chandler (New Orleans/OKC) 25,504.