Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons are making a strong push to be selected to the 2018 NBA All-Star Game. Who else from the Sixers could be in Los Angeles next month?
With league events taking place throughout the weekend, there are several opportunities for players to participate in the festivities.
Embiid and Simmons rank third in Eastern Conference frontcourt and guard fan voting, respectively, based on the second returns announced Thursday.
Embiid (784,287 votes) trails LeBron James (1,622,838) and Giannis Antetokounmpo (1,480,954), with a lead of more than 100,000 ahead of Kristaps Porzingis (640,928).
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Simmons (397,942) moved ahead of Victor Oladipo (385,448). He is behind Kyrie Irving (1,370,643) and DeMar DeRozan (537,168).
Fans make up for 50 percent of votes for the 10 starters. Current NBA players and a select group of media members will account for the remaining 50 percent, voting on a ballot with two guards and three frontcourt players from the East and West. NBA head coaches select the reserves.
Mtn Dew Kickstart Rising Stars
Dario Saric (Croatia) participated in the USA vs. World competition as a rookie and is a candidate in his second season. He is averaging 13.6 points and 6.9 rebounds, with double-digit scoring in his past 19 consecutive games.
If Simmons (Australia) does not make the All-Star team, look for him to be added to this game.
Taco Bell Skills Challenge
Embiid was selected to the competition last season before he was sidelined by a knee injury. He is an ideal contestant given his versatility that fits with the different stations in the challenge. This is the perfect venue for him to showcase those guard skills he likes to demonstrate.
JBL Three-Point Contest
JJ Redick (40.7 percent) automatically comes to mind when listing three-point shooters in the NBA. Robert Covington (38.9 percent) got off to a hot start from three this season and could be a potential contestant as well.