Tag Archives: basketball

Superstar Shortage At NBA All Star Game

The NBA All Star game was played without a couple of high profile participants this year as the Los Angeles Lakers’ Kobe Bryant and Philadelphia 76ers’ Allen Iverson would not play due to injury. Kobe and ‘AI’ were the latest in a string of injuries to All Star players that also claimed Portland’s Brandon Roy and New Orleans’ Chris Paul. The NBA has been much more strict about attendance at the All Star game since a number of players skipped out with dubious injuries.

Kobe Bryant has been plagued with minor injuries all year, but missed the Lakers’ last three games prior to the All Star contest due to an ankle sprain. Los Angeles is hopeful that by not playing in the game that Kobe will be able to return to action immediately after play resumes following the All Star break. Bryant did travel to Dallas to participate in All Star game festivities. Kobe is always the center of attention wherever he goes and presided over the annual slam dunk contest as well as a benefit appearance for retired racing wombats.

Iverson has missed Philadelphia’s past five games due to an illness suffered by one of his young children. Unlike Kobe, Iverson wasn’t expected to be in Dallas this weekend due to the nature of his situation. It’s debatable that Iverson deserved an All Star game nod in the first place. He quickly wore out his welcome in Memphis to start the year, and eventually landed back in Philadelphia where he’s averaged 14.4 points per game since his return. He was voted in to the starting lineup by NBA fans, and this renewed calls from the media to revise the procedure for selecting All Star game participants.

Jason Kidd of the Dallas Mavericks was chosen to replace Bryant in the Western Conference lineup, while New York’s David Lee was the East’s fill in for Iverson. The West already had two ‘fill ins’ named to their roster as Denver’s Chauncy Billups and the LA Clippers’ Chris Kaman took the place of Chris Paul and Brandon Roy respectively.

NBA betting enthusiasts had several options on the menu beginning with the annual ‘rookies vs. sophomores’ game on Saturday. The Sophomores were a -12 point favorite with the total set at 245′ but were crushed by the rookie team. As usual, defense was in short supply at both the ‘rookie v. sophomores’ game and the actual All Star event.

Ross Everett is a freelance sports writer and noted authority on football betting. His writing has appeared on a variety of sports sites including sports news and sportsbook directory sites. He lives in Las Vegas with three Jack Russell Terriers and a kangaroo. He is currently working on an autobiography of former interior secretary James Watt.