Back in November, when many were lining up to vote in their local and state elections, the NBA won the day by announcing that the draft for its annual All-Star Game would be televised live. It was exactly what the fans wanted after the original format changed and, needless to say, it did not disappoint.
Instead of the Eastern Conference All-Stars facing off against the Western Conference All-Stars, the league changed its NBA All-Star Game format to have the leading vote-getters from each conference be the captains and pick their squad for the annual showcase. This year, those honors belonged to Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James and Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo.
So after the wild NBA trade deadline, Team LeBron vs. Team Giannis was finalized for the NBA All-Star Game on February 17 at the Spectrum Center in Charlotte, North Carolina.
This was an absolutely brilliant idea and it was even funnier than expected. To have two of the game’s biggest stars pick a team is great, but the personalities of both superstars truly shined.
From Antetokounmpo accusing James of tampering to LeBron getting upset Giannis took his guy, the 10-minute draft was perfect from start to finish.
Heck, there was even a trade.
The NBA All-Star Draft on TNT was also perfect for Team LeBron. Not only did The King pick a bunch of upcoming free agents, which everyone was quick to point out, he also picked a squad full of NBA MVPs that will completely wax Team Giannis when the ball gets tipped to close out All-Star Weekend.
Seriously, just look at these rosters and explain how this will be fair:
LeBron James (Los Angeles Lakers)
Kevin Durant (Golden State Warriors) — First Pick
Kyrie Irving (Boston Celtics)
Kawhi Leonard (Toronto Raptors)
James Harden (Houston Rockets)
Anthony Davis (New Orleans Pelicans)
Klay Thompson (Golden State Warriors)
Damian Lillard (Portland Trail Blazers)
LaMarcus Aldridge (San Antonio Spurs)
Ben Simmons (Philadelphia 76ers)
Karl-Anthony Towns (Minnesota Timberwolves)
Bradley Beal (Washington Wizards)
Dwyane Wade (Miami Heat)
Giannis Antetokounmpo (Milwaukee Bucks)
Stephen Curry (Golden State Warriors) — First Pick
Joel Embiid (Philadelphia 76ers)
Paul George (Oklahoma City Thunder)
Kemba Walker (Charlotte Hornets)
Khris Middleton (Milwaukee Bucks)
Nikola Jokic (Denver Nuggets)
Blake Griffin (Detroit Pistons)
Russell Westbrook (Oklahoma City Thunder)
D’Angelo Russell (Brooklyn Nets)
Kyle Lowry (Toronto Raptors)
Nikola Vucevic (Orlando Magic)
Dirk Nowitzki (Dallas Mavericks)
Perhaps the game will be closer than many expect. After all, this is the NBA All-Star Game and every single player is insanely good. But from the looks of it, LeBron James definitely took it to Giannis Antetokounmpo initially.
The only thing left to do is play it out and you better believe both will be ready to go.