Kawhi Leonard named starter for 2021 NBA All-Star Game

The NBA today announced today that LA Clippers forward Kawhi Leonard has been selected by fans, players and media members as a Western Conference starter in the 70th NBA All-Star Game, which will be held at State Farm Arena in Atlanta on Sunday, March 7th at 5 p.m. PST on TNT.

Leonard will make his fifth career All-Star appearance (2020, 2019, 2017, 2016), being named a starter each time. Leonard was named the 2020 NBA All-Star Game Kobe Bryant MVP, scoring 30 points on 11-of-18 shooting in a 157-155 victory.

In his 10th NBA season, Leonard is averaging career highs in assists (5.0), 3P% (38.9), and minutes played (34.4). The 6-foot-7 forward currently ranks first in the NBA in offensive rating (122.0), second in steals per game (1.8), and ninth in points per game (26.7). Leonard is also one of two players in the NBA this season to average at least 26 points, five rebounds, five assists, and one-and-a-half steals.

Leonard has scored 30 points or more in eight games this season and 20 points or more in his last 11 games. On February 2 against Brooklyn, he became the second player in franchise history and the first since 1975 to record at least 33 points, five assists, four steals and two blocked shots in a single game. On January 24 against Oklahoma City, Leonard became only the fourth NBA player since 2000 to record at least 34 points, nine rebounds and eight assists with no turnovers. He has scored 30 points or more with no turnovers in four games this season, a league high.

A two-time Defensive Player of the Year (2016, 2015) and two-time Finals MVP (2019, 2014), Leonard holds career averages of 19.0 points, 6.4 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 1.8 steals. The Moreno Valley, Calif., native has twice been voted All-NBA First Team (2017, 2016) and All-NBA Second Team (2020, 2019), as well as All-Defensive First Team (2017, 2016, 2015) and All-Defensive Second Team three times (2020, 2019, 2014).

The NBA All-Star Game team rosters will be drafted by two captains, who will choose from the pool of players voted as starters and reserves in each conference, making their selections regardless of conference affiliation. The captains will be the All-Star starters who receive the most fan votes in their respective conference.

Author: Inside Hoops

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