The time has come.
At 11:00 a.m. on Christmas Day, voting begins for the 2022 NBA All-Star Game.
Once again, fans will vote on the five Western Conference starters and five Eastern Conference starters for this season’s All-Star Game, while the reserves will be selected by NBA head coaches.
All current NBA players are available for selection.
NBA All-Star Voting presented by Tissot will tip off on Saturday, Dec. 25 at 11 AM ET and conclude on Saturday, Jan. 22 at midnight ET, giving fans the opportunity to vote for the 2022 #NBAAllStar Game starters via the NBA App, https://t.co/Pqxh2EPubW & Twitter.
HOW TO VOTE ⤵️ pic.twitter.com/W7XxvperZe
— NBA (@NBA) December 8, 2021
Both the Western Conference and Eastern Conference starters will be made up of two guards and three frontcourt players.
Which players should get those spots? A lot could change between now and when voting ends on Jan. 22, but here’s who’s making a strong case to start to this point of the season.
Potential Western Conference All-Star starters
G: Stephen Curry, Warriors
G: Chris Paul, Suns
F: LeBron James, Lakers
F: Draymond Green, Warriors
F: Nikola Jokic, Nuggets
Curry, Jokic and Paul were three of the five players TSN’s Benyam Kidane included in his most recent MVP ladder.
Curry was the early front-runner for MVP and while he’s cooled off a little as of late, he’s still having one of the best seasons of his career. Jokic is putting together another historic season and is the reason the Nuggets, who have been hit hard by the injury bug, are competitive. Paul is averaging a career-low in points, but he’s leading the league in assists and is a driving force in Phoenix’s success.
In saying that, there are two players hot on Paul’s heels for one of the two guard spots: Donovan Mitchell and Devin Booker.
James is another relatively easy selection. Disappointing as the Lakers have been this season, he’s flirting with 27-7-7 on a nightly basis and has games where he still looks like the best player in the league.
The final frontcourt spot is more up for grabs. Paul George, Luka Doncic, Karl-Anthony Towns and Rudy Gobert each have a case, but I’m siding with Green for now. Sure, he’s averaging less than 10 points per game on the season, but he’s a nightly triple-double threat and is quarterbacking the league’s best defense. There isn’t another duo in the league quite like Curry and Green.
In consideration: Devin Booker, Suns; Paul George, Clippers; Luka Doncic, Mavericks; Donovan Mitchell, Jazz; Karl-Anthony Towns, Timberwolves; Rudy Gobert, Jazz; Ja Morant, Grizzlies
Potential Eastern Conference All-Star starters
G: Trae Young, Hawks
G: DeMar DeRozan, Bulls
F: Kevin Durant, Nets
F: Giannis Antetokounmpo, Bucks
F: Joel Embiid, 76ers
The two other players included in Kidane’s recent MVP ladder? Durant and Antetokounmpo.
Durant is leading the league in scoring on almost 50-40-90 shooting splits and has powered the Nets to the best record in the Eastern Conference — an impressive feat considering Kyrie Irving has yet to play and James Harden has been up-and-down to start the season. The Bucks have dealt with a number of absences but Antetokounmpo had been their one constant until he entered the league’s health and safety protocols on Dec. 14. He’s having another MVP caliber season.
The Hawks have struggled with consistency following their trip to the Eastern Conference Finals, but the numbers point to them being a completely different team without Young, who is putting together another strong season.
DeRozan shouldn’t need much of an explanation. He hasn’t earned an All-Star selection since 2017-18, but he’s having one of the best seasons of his career and is in the MVP conversation. The only question is if he’s guard or frontcourt eligible. If he’s guard eligible, it opens up a frontcourt spot for Embiid, who has missed some time but has been on a tear as of late. If he’s only frontcourt eligible, it opens up a spot for someone else at guard, such as Harden, LaMelo Ball or Zach LaVine.
Since he was considered a guard on last season’s ballot, I’m going to assume that DeRozan will be guard eligible this season.
In consideration: Jimmy Butler, Heat; LaMelo Ball, Hornets; James Harden, Nets; Zach LaVine, Bulls; Jarrett Allen, Cavaliers; Jayson Tatum, Celtics
Where and when is the 2022 NBA All-Star Game?
Cleveland is hosting the NBA 2022 All-Star Game, which will be played on Sunday, Feb. 20.
Cleveland last hosted the All-Star Game in 1997 when the league celebrated its 50th anniversary. The league is celebrating its 75th anniversary this season.
In the first week of the season, the NBA released a list featuring the 75 greatest players of all time to celebrate the league’s 75th anniversary.