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NBA Announces NBA All-Star Game Starters, February 19th, New Orleans

Jimmy Butler, Anthony Davis & DeMar DeRozan named All-Star starters for 1st time as NBA officially names ASW starting lineups:

Via NBA dot com:

East Starters: DeMar DeRozan, Kyrie Irving, LeBron James, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Jimmy Butler
West Starters: Kawhi Leonard, Kevin Durant, Stephen Curry, Anthony Davis, James Harden

Russell Westbrook might be the most dynamic player in the NBA this season, scoring a league-best 30.6 points and averaging a triple-double through his first 44 games. But unless an injury occurs, Westbrook will not be a starter in the 2017 NBA All-Star Game.

The starting lineups were revealed Thursday for the 66th NBA All-Star Game, which will be played Sunday, Feb. 19, in New Orleans at the Smoothie King Center. And apparently Westbrook’s first-half performance wasn’t impressive enough to crack the Western Conference’s top five.

Then again, the West’s starting guards each have a pretty good case for inclusion. Golden State’s reigning two-time MVP Stephen Curry will make his fourth All-Star appearance. Alongside Curry will be Houston’s James Harden, who is second in the NBA in points (28.9) and first in assists (11.6) in his role as point guard for the Rockets.

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NBA: Chicago Bulls All-Star Jimmy Butler’s New SLAM Magazine Feature

SLAM Magazine Issue 191 profiles the hard work and fast rise of Bulls All-Star Jimmy Butler: “I Pledge Allegiance To The Grind”

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Via SLAM’s Christopher Cason:

Confidence in one’s self is essentially the biggest asset a successful athlete can have.

And that power of self-belief is the exact reason that by the time you’re reading this, the ink of Jimmy Butler’s signature will be dry and affixed to a new (5 year $95M) max contract.

From an early age, the Tomball, TX, native learned to trust and rely on himself due in large part to spending some of his teenage years without a place to call home. Those experiences from those tough times, along with a Texas-sized work ethic, became pillars of his character. Those pillars are why it wasn’t that difficult for him to turn down an estimated four-year, $44 million offer from the Chicago Bulls prior to the beginning of the regular season.

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NBA: Bulls Jimmy Butler In The Midst Of An All-Star, Career Season In Chicago

Sports Illustrated and Sports Media World sit down with Chicago Bulls star Jimmy Butler in Portland for extensive SI NBA feature:

Jimmy Butler’s smile says it all: It’s been a good month for the Bulls’ budding star.

Back in Butler’s hometown of Tomball, Texas, they might even use a phrase like “boom times” to describe his strong start this season. Chicago’s defensive-minded shooting guard is averaging 20.8 points and posting career-high numbers across the board. Not only is Butler looking like a leading candidate to become a first-time All-Star, he is also emerging as one of the most-coveted free agents of the 2015 class.

The smile crept across Butler’s face again as he thought back to the Tomball teenager who, even though he wasn’t recruited by a single Division-I school, was convinced that he was the best player in the country.

“Derrick [Rose] and I were both in the Class of 2007,” Butler told SI.com during an extended interview in Portland, where the Bulls were playing, on Saturday. “At that time, I never paid attention to the game. I didn’t know this guy was No. 1 in the nation or this guy was No. 10. Some of my teammates did and obviously Derrick was No. 1 in the nation. They’d come to the games and say, ‘Did you see what Derrick Rose did last night? Simeon High School! Chicago, Illinois!’ Everyone in the nation knew who Derrick Rose was.

“Me being myself, I was like, ‘Let him come down here, I’ll give him 40.’”

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