by Conrad Brunner
December 18, 2001
INDIANAPOLIS, December 18, 2001 - The Pacers' Jermaine O'Neal ranks second among Eastern Conference centers in the first report of balloting for the 2002 NBA All-Star Game.
Philadelphia's Dikembe Mutombo leads the way at center with 193,537 votes. O'Neal is second at 108,094, just ahead of Miami's Alonzo Mourning (96,787). Toronto's Hakeem Olajuwon (66,211) and New York's Marcus Camby (62,936) round out the top five.
The only other Pacers player among the leaders is Reggie Miller, who ranks 10th among guards with 22,701 votes. Philadelphia's Allen Iverson and Washington's Michael Jordan are the runaway leaders at guard, both with more than 270,000 votes.
Toronto’s Vince Carter and Iverson lead all players in the Eastern Conference and Shaquille O’Neal and Kobe Bryant, from the defending 2000 and 2001 NBA Champion Los Angeles Lakers, lead all players in the Western Conference.
Fan balloting will determine starters for the All-Star Game, to be played at The First Union Center in Philadelphia on Sunday, February 10.
Balloting will continue through January 13, and updated results for the Eastern and Western Conferences will be issued weekly concluding with the announcement of the All-Star starters on Saturday, January 26. After the fan voting is completed and the starters are announced, the head coaches in each conference will vote to determine the remaining All-Stars in their respective conferences.