(KTXL) — For the first time since 2017, the Sacramento Kings will have a representative at the NBA All-Star game.
Kings power forward/center Domantas Sabonis was named one of the Western Conference’s all-star reserves on Thursday. The all-star reserves were announced Thursday on TNT’s “Inside the NBA.” The starters were announced TNT’s flagship basketball show last week.
•Video Player Above: 49ers’ George Kittle on enduring another loss in the NFC Championship
Sabonis will make his third all-star appearance with his previous two coming with the Indiana Pacers.
The 26-year-old is the first Kings players to be selected to the all-star game since Demarcus Cousins made it to the game for three straight years from 2015-17.
Sabonis, along with point guard De’Aaron Fox, have been part of the Kings’ resurgence, leading the team to the third-best record in the Western Conference at 29-21. The Kings currently hold the longest playoff drought in North American sports.
This season, Sabonis is averaging 18.8 points and 7.1 assists per game in his first full season with the Kings. He was acquired by the team last February in a trade that sent Tyrese Haliburton to the Pacers. Haliburton was also named an all star this year.
The 2023 NBA All-Star game will have a format where all selected players will be drafted by captains LeBron James and Giannis Antetokounmpo, both of whom received the most votes in the West and East.
The first eight players to be drafted will be starters while the other 14 reserves will be chosen by the NBA coaches of the all-star teams.
Kings rookie Keegan Murray will also take part in the all-star weekend, as he was named to the player pool for the Rising Stars tournament, which will take place on Feb. 17 at the Vivint Arena in Salt Lake City.
The Rising Stars tournament will feature a three-game mini-tournament among four teams comprised of NBA rookies, second-year players, and players from the G-League, the NBA’s developmental league. It’s the second year in a row that the Rising Stars event will be played in that format.
The 2023 NBA All-Star Game will be on Feb. 19 at the Vivint Arena in Salt Lake City, Utah.