LaMelo Ball
Sam Sharpe-USA TODAY Sports

Brooklyn’s star is out injured, so the All-Star roster will include a bright young star.

Kevin Durant was the leading vote recipient for the Eastern Conference this year, but he won’t be physically ready to go for the All-Star Game.

On Monday, the league announced LaMelo Ball will replace Durant on the roster. Ball is averaging 19.6 points, 7.1 rebounds and 7.5 assists per game this season with Charlotte.

For the second straight season, Boston’s Jayson Tatum will start in place of Durant. He was fourth in Eastern Conference front-court voting this season.

Durant is working his way back from an MCL injury suffered late in January. Expectations (hopes) are that he can return by the end of February.

In the meantime, he’ll continue monitoring Stephen A. Smith’s comments about him on ESPN and social media.

The NBA also announced San Antonio’s Dejounte Murray will replace Draymond Green for the game. Murray is averaging a career-best 19.6 points and 9.2 assists per game with a league-leading 2.1 steals per game.




Tab has written about MLB, the NHL and the NFL for more than a decade for publications including The Fourth Period, Bleacher Report and La Vida Baseball. He is the author of two books about the Chicago Blackhawks and has been credentialed for the MLB All-Star Game and postseason and multiple Stanley Cup Finals. He is the co-host of the Line Drive Radio podcast.