Minneapolis/St. Paul The 2011 NBA All-Star Ballot was unveiled today during a special tip-off event in Los Angeles, the Official Host City of NBAAll-Star 2011. Michael Beasley, Corey Brewer and Kevin Love will represent the Timberwolves on the ballot as fans worldwide have the opportunity to vote for their favorite players as starters for the 60th NBA All-Star Game. The 2011 NBA All-Star Game, which will air live on TNT and ESPN Radio in the U.S., and reach fans in more than 200 countries and territories in more than 40 languages, will be played at STAPLES Center on Sunday, Feb. 20, 2011.
Beasley currently ranks 15th in the NBA in scoring at 22.0 points per game and has topped 25 points in each of his last five outings, the first such streak by a Wolves player in over a decade. He poured in a career-best 42 at Sacramento on Nov. 10, becoming the youngest player in franchise history with a 40-point game, and has surpassed 30 three times this season. Last night, Beasley capped a 33-point night with the game-winning jumper from the elbow in the closing seconds.
Brewer has now scored in double figures in eight of his last nine games, averaging 11.6 points per game over that span. He’s also swiped at least two steals in five of the last six games (10 of 13 on the season) and ranks seventh in the league at 2.15 thefts per game. A candidate for the league’s Most Improved Award last season, Brewer more than doubled his previous career scoring average by tallying 13.0 points per game in his third season, and also established a new club record by hitting at least one three-pointer in 33 consecutive games.
Love is the league’s leading rebounder at 14.3 boards per game and his nine double-doubles on the season trail only the Lakers’ Pau Gasol (10). Love tallied career highs of 31 points and a franchise-record 31 rebounds in the Nov. 12 win over New York, becoming just the 19th player in league history to record a 30/30 game and the first since Moses Malone in 1982. Three days earlier, Love posted 23 points, 24 rebounds and five assists in a narrow defeat to the Lakers to become the youngest player with a 20/20/5 game since Shaquille O’Neal in 1993.
Beasley, Brewer and Love are all looking for their first NBA All-Star Game appearance.
Balloting for Wolves fans starts in-arena tomorrow night when the Wolves host the Los Angeles Lakers at 7 p.m. Fans can cast their votes at each NBA arena; in 20 languages on NBA.com; and through mobile phones by texting the player’s last name to 6-9-6-2-2 (“MYNBA”) or by visiting m.nba.com on any wireless carrier. Balloting will conclude Jan. 23, with the starters announced live on TNT on Jan. 27 during a special one-hour pregame show at 7 pm ET featuring Ernie Johnson, Charles Barkley and Kenny Smith.
The NBA All-Star ballot lists 120 players 60 each from the Eastern and Western conferences with 24 guards, 24 forwards, and 12 centers from each conference comprising the list. Voters select two guards, two forwards and one center from each conference. The 120 players on the ballot were selected by a panel of media who regularly cover the NBA: J.A. Adande (ESPN.com), Marv Albert (TNT), Art Garcia (NBA.com) Marc Spears (Yahoo! Sports), Doug Smith (The Toronto Star) and Ian Thomsen (Sports Illustrated).
NBA All-Star 2011 in Los Angeles will bring together some of the most talented and passionate players in the leagues history for a global celebration of the game. The week leading up to the 60th NBA All-Star Game will feature a full slate of community-enhancing activities, fan festivals and events, including the NBA Cares All-Star Day of Service, the T-Mobile Rookie Challenge & Youth Jam, and NBA All-Star Saturday Night presented by State Farm. NBA All-Star Jam Session presented by adidas, the hugely successful interactive basketball celebration, will return to the Los Angeles Convention Center. Los Angeles and the STAPLES Center will host NBA All-Star 2011, marking the fifth time The City of Angels and the second time STAPLES Center will be the site of the annual celebration. STAPLES Center last played host to NBA All-Star in 2004, and L.A. also hosted the All-Star Game in 1963, 1972, and 1983.