Hawks forward John Collins soars to the basket over the Bucks' Giannis Antetokounmpo. Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com
Photo: ccompton@ajc.com/Curtis Compton
Photo: ccompton@ajc.com/Curtis Compton

No Hawks players picked for NBA All-Star Game

The Hawks don’t have any All-Stars in 2019, but they might have a couple in the future.

Fourteen players were named reserves Thursday for the Feb. 17 NBA All-Star Game in Charlotte but there were not any Hawks among them.

Indiana's Victor Oladipo was selected as one of the Eastern Conference reserves, even though his season is over because of injury. The other reserves from the East were Toronto's Kyle Lowry, Milwaukee's Khris Middleton, Philadelphia's Ben Simmons, Washington's Bradley Beal, Detroit's Blake Griffin and Orlando's Nikola Vucevic.

Second-year power forward John Collins was the Hawks’ best candidate. He leads the team in scoring with 19.3 points per game and averages 9.9 rebounds per game too. Rookie Trae Young averages 16.5 points per game and 7.3 assists.

Dallas rookie Luka Doncic, who was drafted by the Hawks and traded to the Mavs in the deal that brought Young to Atlanta,  didn't make the cut either, getting denied in his bid to be the first rookie since Griffin in 2011 to be picked for the game.

Young and Collins will represent the Hawks in the Rising Stars game on Feb. 15. Doncic will play in that game too.

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver will pick a replacement for Oladipo. There are plenty of  candidates from the East, including Philadelphia's Jimmy Butler, Brooklyn's D'Angelo Russell and Boston's Jayson Tatum.

Fans, media and players collaborated on the voting for the starters. The reserves were picked by NBA coaches.

New Orleans, meanwhile, has an All-Star for the sixth straight year.

That is, unless he gets traded first.

Pelicans standout Anthony Davis — only three days removed from having his trade request made known publicly — was selected for the game. Davis wants to be swapped out of New Orleans by the Feb. 7 trade deadline, so it remains unclear if his uniform for the All-Star contest will bear a Pelicans logo or not.

The other Western Conference reserves were Oklahoma City's Russell Westbrook, Denver's Nikola Jokic, Portland's Damian Lillard, Golden State's Klay Thompson, San Antonio's LaMarcus Aldridge and Minnesota's Karl-Anthony Towns. 

Utah's Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert both fell short, as did the Los Angeles Clippers' Tobias Harris. Phoenix's Devin Harris also wasn't picked, despite entering Thursday 11th in the NBA in scoring and 10th in assists. Rebounding leader Andre Drummond of Detroit also didn't make the game.

The All-Star draft, to be handled by team captains LeBron James and Giannis Antetokounmpo on Feb. 7. James will have the first overall pick, and they'll keep going until each side has 12 players for the matchup. 

James and Antetokounmpo will pick the starters first — with that pool including Philadelphia's Joel Embiid, Toronto's Kawhi Leonard, Boston's Kyrie Irving, Charlotte's Kemba Walker, Golden State's Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant, Oklahoma City's Paul George and Houston's James Harden.

The Hawks (16-34) play at Utah Friday night at 9 p.m.

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