Steven Adams is among the rookies and sophomores who have been selected to be in the pool of players for the BBVA Compass Rising Stars Challenge at NBA All-Star Weekend.
Adams, the 13th overall selection by the Oklahoma City Thunder in last year’s draft, is averaging 3.8 points and 4.6 rebounds per game this season. He has emerged as the backup center for the Thunder since day one of the season, beating out Hasheem Thabeet for that role.
The rookies and sophomores, for the third straight year now, will be drafted on to two teams by general managers, who have not yet been announced. The last two seasons, it was Shaquille O’Neal and Charles Barkley who drafted the two teams.
Here are the rookies joining Adams that will be in the pool:
Steven Adams, Oklahoma City Thunder
Pero Antic, Atlanta Hawks
Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks
Trey Burke, Utah Jazz
Michael Carter-Williams, Philadelphia 76ers
Tim Hardaway, Jr., New York Knicks
Victor Oladipo, Orlando Magic
Kelly Olynyk, Boston Celtics
Mason Plumlee, Brooklyn Nets
As you can see, Alex Len of the Phoenix Suns and Cody Zeller of the Charlotte Bobcats did not make the pool. Both Len and Zeller were selected ahead of Adams in last year’s draft.
Here are the sophomores that will be in the pool:
Harrison Barnes, Golden State Warriors
Bradley Beal, Washington Wizards
Anthony Davis, New Orleans Pelicans
Andre Drummond, Detroit Pistons
Terrence Jones, Houston Rockets
Damian Lillard, Portland Trail Blazers
Jared Sullinger, Boston Celtics
Jonas Valaciunas, Toronto Raptors
Dion Waiters, Cleveland Cavaliers
Absent from this list of sophomores is Jeremy Lamb of the Thunder. There are a lot of talented sophomores who made it ahead of Lamb, although it wouldn’t be difficult to make the case for Lamb ahead of a few of them.
The draft for the two teams will be live on TNT on Feb. 6 at 7 p.m. EST. Following the draft, fans will be able to vote for who they think the starters should be for each team.
The game will be played the Friday night before the All-Star game, Feb. 14.