Could Artest Join O'Neal in All-Star Game?

by Conrad Brunner

Tuesday, Nov. 11, 2003

If you'd like to pose a Question of the Day to Conrad Brunner, submit it along with your full name and hometown to Bruno's_mailbag@pacers.com. Brunner’s opinions are his own and do not necessarily reflect those of Pacers players, coaches or management.

QUESTION OF THE DAY

Conrad Brunner

Q. It is obvious that Jermaine O'Neal is our All-Star and go-to-guy but, through the first couple of weeks of the season, Ron Artest has been our biggest threat. It is almost a given Jermaine will be in the All-Star Game. What are the chances we will see Artest there with him? (From Ryan in Anderson, IN)

A. It certainly looks good at the moment, but it depends upon a few things, the first of which is the fan balloting. Because there is such a crowd of prominent names at small forward in the Eastern Conference, it seems unlikely Artest would win that popularity contest. That would leave his selection in the hands of the coaches, and that usually down to the combination of individual performance and team success. If the Pacers are one of the top teams in the East at the time of the balloting, and Artest continues to produce at a high level, he’ll be a leading candidate for the roster – particularly if he continues to play with the composure and maturity he has shown to this point.