Instead, it will be a first because Curry will be coming off the bench in an All-Star Game for the first time in his career.
On Thursday, the NBA announced the 10 starters for the 2024 game, which will take place on February 18 at Gainbridge Fieldhouse, home of the Indiana Pacers. The roster format is to have two backcourt players and three frontcourt players from both the East and the West (the league is returning to the traditional conference format this year).
But when the Western Conference backcourt was announced, Curry’s name was absent. Instead, the starters will be Luka Dončić of the Dallas Mavericks and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander of the Oklahoma City Thunder.
The All-Star starting lineups are voted on by the fans (who have 50% of the vote), the players (25%), and the media (25%). While Curry was voted in by the fans, where he’s always a favorite (he finished second behind Dončić in fan voting), he didn’t crack the top-two with the other ballots. Curry finished third in player voting, behind Dončić and SGA, and finished fourth in media voting, behind those two and Anthony Edwards of the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Curry is an absolute lock to make the Western Conference reserves when the additional seven players (two backcourt, three frontcourt, and two wild cards) are announced next Thursday. Reserves are voted on by the league’s coaches, while commissioner Adam Silver will select any injury reserves.
As much as I would have loved to see Curry in the starting lineup for the 10th time, I can’t fault the results. Both Dončić and Gilgeous-Alexander are having sensational seasons (33.6 points, 8.5 rebounds, and 9.3 assists per game, 6th-best EPM in the league for the former; 31.1 points, 5.6 rebounds, 6.4 assists, and 2.3 steals per game, 2nd-best EPM in the league for the latter), and their respective teams have been much better than the Warriors this year.
Dončić and SGA are joined in the West’s starting lineup by former Warrior Kevin Durant of the Phoenix Suns, two-time MVP Nikola Jokić of the Denver Nuggets, and team captain LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers. The starting lineup for the East is Tyrese Haliburton of the Pacers, Damian Lillard of the Milwaukee Bucks, Joel Embiid of the Philadelphia 76ers, Jayson Tatum of the Boston Celtics, and team captain Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Bucks.