Players react to the announcement of 2021 NBA All-Star Game

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Matt Mariani, Editor, Staff Writer

The 2021 NBA All star game is set to take place on March 7th in Atlanta. Due to, many NBA players, including Lebron James, are upset about the game being played. Before NBA games this season, many precautions have followed for the safety of players. Players get tested regularly, have to wear masks, sit separated, and only a limited number of fans are allowed into arenas to watch games. While there hasn’t been much spread of the virus throughout the league, one case in the All Star game could spread it to many teams possibly the second half of the season. 

“I have zero energy and zero excitement about an all star game this year.” said Lebron James when asked about having an all star game during the  pandemic season. 

Lebron was not the only player who expressed their feelings against an  All-Star game. Kings guard De’Aaron Fox is in disagreement with the league’s decision. “If  I’m going to be brutally honest, I think it’s stupid.” Fox is an up and coming player who is having the best season of his young career.

Being an all star is a high honor in any sport including the NBA, which is why it’s surprising even young players are in disagreement with having an all star game during the pandemic. Young players who have opportunities to make the All-Star game for the first time, don’t agree with playing because of the risk at hand, bringing players from all over the country to Atlanta. 

On the other hand, some players are excited for the game. One including Nikola Jokic, who would also prefer the break and extra rest.

“It’s an honor, you represent a lot of people, back, Serbia, Sombor, my family. It’s honor to be there.” Although Jokic would enjoy rest, he seems to want to play in the game to represent his country and family. This also relates to other foreign NBA players who could be playing in the all star game, having a chance to represent more than just their skills on the court. 

Young players and older players have mixed emotions about the pandemic season and the all star game taking place. Most notably Lebron James being upset with the decision as he believes it puts the league in a bad spot. One of the best basketball players and athletes around the world is publicly in disagreement with their choice concerning the all star game. During any normal season this would not be a big deal, but considering everything that had to go into having the season, the safety protocols, mask wearing, no fans, and more, it doesn’t seem many players want more risk during the season.