CLEVELAND — Cleveland Cavaliers guard Darius Garland will be making his NBA All-Star debut after being selected as a reserve last week. On Thursday the All-Star Draft was held and Garland will be joining a former Cavalier on the roster after being selected by Lakers' LeBron James.
James is a team captain in the All-Star Game, sharing the honors with Nets' Kevin Durant, who won't be playing due to a knee injury. After selecting the All-Star starters in the first round of the Draft, it was time to select reserves, and it didn't take long for Garland to land on a team.
With his second pick from the reserves, James selected Garland, grinning as he could see that Durant wanted him on his roster.
"I know you wanted him KD," LeBron laughed, and Durant responded, "You know I did."
Garland is averaging 19.9 points, 8.1 assists and 1.2 steals per game this season and has helped lead the Cavs near the top of the Eastern Conference, now in the No. 4 spot. His playmaking ability and clutch demeanor in games has been evident to the Cavs and their opponents all season long.
That was only made more clear in the way Garland was talked about during the All-Star Draft Thursday.
After the results were in, Durant and James were asked if they wanted to make any trades, and Durant said he wanted Garland on his team—but James shut that down immediately.
"Garland is untouchable man, Garland is untouchable," James laughed when Durant asked. "I've left Cleveland twice I need to have some type of muscle to go back with me...I got to keep Garland...That's my only way I can save my fans left that I got back there."
Garland joins James on Team LeBron made up of the following players:
- LeBron James.
- Darius Garland.
- Giannis Antetokounmpo.
- Steph Curry.
- DeMar DeRozan.
- Nikola Jokić.
- Luka Dončić.
- Chris Paul.
- Jimmy Butler.
- Donovan Mitchell.
- Fred VanVleet.
- James Harden.
They'll face off against Team Durant made up of the following players:
- Joel Embiid.
- Ja Morant.
- Jayson Tatum.
- Trae Young.
- Andrew Wiggins.
- Devin Booker.
- Karl Anthony-Towns.
- Zach LaVine.
- Dejounte Murray.
- Khris Middleton.
- LaMelo Ball.
- Rudy Gobert.
Both teams will be playing for charity with Team James representing the Kent State I PROMISE program in partnership with the LeBron James Family Foundation, and Team Durant playing for the Greater Cleveland Food Bank.
The NBA All-Star Game will be played inside Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse on Sunday, Feb. 20 at 8 p.m.
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