The league announced the second return of fan votes for the 2018 NBA All-Star Game, and while much hasn’t changed, LeBron James is now the sole votes leader. James, who totaled 1,622,838 votes in the January 11 results, passed the recent votes leader in the Eastern conference, Giannis Antetokounmpo (1,480,954).
The Celtics’ Kyrie Irving with 1,370,643 votes still leads all guards in the Eastern Conference. A total of 833,475 votes separates Irving and the second-place guard DeMar DeRozan (537,168).
Ben Simmons of Philadelphia saw an increase in votes (397,942). The increase allowed Simmons to pass Victor Oladipo (385,448) and grab a top three spot for eastern conference guards.
Full vote results:
Here's the top 10 at guard/forward in both conferences pic.twitter.com/W7OPxdDly9
— Rob Lopez (@r0bato) January 11, 2018
In the Western Conference, Golden State Warriors Kevin Durant and Steph Curry are the clear and present lead vote-getters. Only 43,000 votes separate Durant (1,326,059) and Curry (1,369,658) for the chance represent their conference as a captain for the All-Star Game.
MVP candidate James Harden tallied 978,540 votes as he sits in second place for Western Conference guards. Russell Westbrook, the reigning league MVP, is third among west guards with 791,332 votes.
Joel Embiid is third overall and among frontcourt players in the east with 784,287 votes. Kristaps Porzingis’ 640,928 votes are good for fourth overall in the Eastern Conference.
This season the top vote-getters from each conference will act as captains and pick the teams for the All-Star Game. In a press conference in London on Thursday, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver doubled-down on his decision to not televise the All-Star draft. The decision, while a win with the players, has had no such success with the fans.
According to Silver, the goal of the new format was to improve and bring more excitement to the All-star game. Silver told reporters on Thursday before the Celtics-Sixers game in London that a conversation with NBA Players Association President Chris Paul prompted the change in the way the teams will be structured.