CLEVELAND — After being snubbed, not once, not twice but three times, the NBA finally got it right and Cleveland Cavaliers center Jarrett Allen is headed to the NBA All-Star Game coming to Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse this weekend.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver announced Monday that Allen will replace Philadelphia 76ers guard James Harden, who will not participate with a hamstring injury.
This season, Allen is averaging 16.2 points, 11.1 rebounds and 1.35 blocks per game, ranking second in the league in field goal percentage at 66.5% and tied for sixth in the league for double-doubles with 30.
Allen was not selected to be an All-Star starter, which was not exactly expected anyway, but was snubbed a second time when he wasn't selected as a reserve either.
The third snub came when Silver didn't chose him as the injury replacement for Kevin Durant, who won't play in the game with a knee injury, instead selecting Charlotte Hornets guard LaMelo Ball.
At that point, the Eastern Conference reserves and injury replacement featured no bigs, only guards. Now, there is some size to represent not only the conference, but the Cavs as they host the All-Star festivities.
While Allen had expressed his desire to be an All-Star during fan voting, he took the snubs all in stride.
"It’s a machine that keeps on going," Allen said after being left off the reserves announcement. "So, it’s like, do I either sulk that I didn’t make the game or do I just keep looking forward and keep playing my basketball?”
But Allen can hold his head high now that he is officially making his first All-Star appearance.
Allen will join teammate Darius Garland on Team LeBron in the NBA All-Star Game on Sunday inside Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse at 8 p.m.
He and Garland will also join rookie Evan Mobley in the Skills Challenge on All-Star Saturday Night.
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