The NBA All-Star game is one of the most marquee events on the calendar as it brings together the best talents from the Eastern and Western Conference for an exhibition game.
The 2018 All-Star game was won by Team LeBron 148-145 against Team Curry at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, with LeBron James winning his third All-Star Game MVP award with 29 points, 10 rebounds, and eight assists.
In 2018, Joel Embiid, Karl-Anthony Towns, Bradley Beal, Victor Oladipo, Goran Dragic, and Kristaps Porzingis were shown to be the league's rising stars as they were selected for the All-Star game for the first time.
2019's All-Star game on February 17 at the Spectrum Center in Charlotte should be no different, as we could definitely see a few players being selected for the game for the first time in their careers.
Here are seven players that have a strong chance of earning their first-ever All-Star selection in 2019.
A lot of people were annoyed that Ben Simmons was snubbed for a spot in the 2018 All-Star Game. If he's able to replicate the performance that earned him Rookie of the Year honors last season, he should be selected in 2019.
Simmons averaged close to a triple-double last season with the Sixers, as he averaged 15.8 points, 8.2 assists and 8.1 rebounds per game. There's a strong chance he will reproduce these kinds of stats next season.
After narrowly missing out on the Rookie of the Year award, Donovan Mitchell should be a top contender for a first-time All-Star nod in 2019. He's become a focal point of the Utah Jazz and is one of the main reasons why they're able to compete in the West.
Mitchell averaged 22.5 points per game after the All-Star break last season helping the Jazz secure the fifth seed in the West. If he is able to generate this kind of performance on the court again, he'll be in Charlotte in 2019.
Jayson Tatum of the Boston Celtics is another player that could be selected for their first All-Star game in 2019.
How he and his teammates were able to respond to Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward going down last season and still take the team to the Eastern Conference Finals was truly remarkable and unexpected.
Tatum averaged 18.5 points per game during the Celtics' playoff run despite only being 20 years old. No doubt, he will be an even better player once Irving and Hayward are back on the court, meaning he should receive an All-Star nod for the first time.
Last season, Devin Booker of the Phoenix Suns joined a rare club of players that can say that by the age of 21 or younger, they averaged more than 24 points, four rebounds, and four assists per game in a single season for their team.
These players are LeBron James, Tracy McGrady, and Michael Jordan. With the additions of Deandre Ayton through the draft and Trevor Ariza through free agency, Booker should improve enough on the hardwood to earn himself his first All-Star selection next year.
Nikola Jokic was phenomenal for the Denver Nuggets last season and, as a result, he earned himself a max contract this summer.
In 2018, Jokic averaged 18.5 points per game while shooting 39.6 percent beyond the 3-point arc, all while adding 10.7 rebounds and 6.1 assists per game.
The Nuggets roster is loaded with talent and if they're able to improve their standings in the West, as well as the center producing the same form from last season, Jokic could very well earn himself an All-Star selection.
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