All-Star Game changes format, will choose teams playground style

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver has done it again! He recently made a ton of rule changes to benefit the league, and he's continuing the trend by altering the format of the NBA All-Star Game. This star-studded weekend has lost it's zest over the years, with athletes playing haphazardly and not giving 100% of their effort. These changes aim to add some competition to the festivities, and to make All-Star Weekend a hot ticket once again.

The major adjustment that the league has implemented has to do with the All-Star teams themselves. In the past, twelve players from each conference were voted to represent their sides of the country: the East versus the West. So, if you were on the Boston Celtics, then you were automatically placed on the Eastern Conference All-Star team, and if you played for the Los Angeles Lakers, then you played for the Western Conference All-Star team. We know this, man

Fans will still have the privilege to vote for their twelve favorite players from each conference, but instead of those players being placed on their conference's team, now, they will be placed into a draft pool, where they will be chosen by their team's captain. Who will be the captain, you ask? The one player from each conference who receives the most fan votes will be elected as their team's captain, and they will have the honor of choosing their teammates, regardless of what conference they play in during the regular season. 

Changes to the All-Star Game have been expected for a long time now, because the game has gotten a bit stale over the years. What could be an epic battle between some of the best athletes in the world, has turned into a leisurely scrimmage between colleagues. Players don't want to get hurt right before the playoffs begin, and front offices even encourage their guys to take the game easy. The fire that once drove the NBA All-Star Game had been doused long ago. 

It's convenient that the alteration is taking place this year, just as one conference is beginning to drastically outweigh the other. The Western Conference is stacked with talent. They now have multiple super teams that should compete for a title, and possess the majority of the All-Stars that the NBA has to offer. Don't get me wrong, the Eastern Conference has some great players too, but the competition is much thinner on our side of the Continental Divide. 

Even teams in the West that finished at the bottom of the standings last season have some of the best players in the league. The New Orleans Pelicans have Anthony Davis and Demarcus Cousins; the Minnesota Timberwolves have Karl-Anthony Towns, Andrew Wiggins, and the recently added Jimmy Butler; the Portland Trail Blazers have Damian Lillard and Evan Turner (cough); and the list goes on and on. Half of the teams in the East are just bad and don't have anyone good on their teams. 

If anything, this rule change will just add another fun activity to All-Star weekend. It'll be interesting to see in which order players are chosen, and who they wind up playing with. Will the captains choose the most talented player available, or will they just choose their friends? Will beefing players be forced to play with one another, or will they face off in a bitter matchup? I hope we see some awkward moments between feuding players like Kevin Durant/Russell Westbrook and LeBron James/Kyrie Irving.

I'm also looking forward to some in-team rivalries. Hopefully some Cs' players will be plotted against each other.  

What I really love about this new format is that some of these cocky NBA players will have to live a few hours in my shoes. Oh, you've always been picked first in playground drafts? I'm sure it's a good feeling. But not today! Today you'll have to stand there, waiting to be chosen while everyone else is picked before you, wondering where your inadequacies lie. You'll wonder how that kid was chosen before you were. What does he have that you don't? The two minute draft process will seem like hours as the time slowly ticks and you still haven't been chosen. Will you ever be chosen? I think I'm having an anxiety attack just thinking about all of those defeating recess moments. 

Before you go, here are a few more things to know about the new All-Star Game
  • Coaches will still choose the 14 reserves
  • The All-Star Game will be held on February 18th at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.
  • For the first time, the game will be played for charity. Each team will select either a national organization, or an L.A. area charity to play for, with that charity receiving donated funds from the event. 
By the way, I'm nasty at sports and was never picked last. Sigh. 

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Photo 1: NBA 
Photo 2: Getty Images