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Rose voted on as East All-Star starter

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Jan 27

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So now what about Booz?

Derrick Rose on Thursday became the 12th Bull and first since 1998 to be named a starter for the NBA All-Star team with the official announcement on the TNT pregame show.

Rose, an All-Star reserve last season, joins Dwyane Wade, LeBron James, Amar’e Stoudemire and Dwight Howard as Eastern Conference starters. Boston’s Doc Rivers has the edge to coach the game with the Celtics leading the Eastern Conference, though the Bulls Tom Thibodeau has an outside chance. The coach of the team with the best record Feb. 6 will coach. Orlando’s Stan Van Gundy is ineligible after having coached last season. Gregg Popovich will coach the West team.

“I’m feeling really loved right now and I appreciate all the support that helped me earn a starting position in the All-Star game,” Rose said in a statement to the Bulls.  ”I want to thank all the fans that voted, especially the people from my hometown of Chicago.  I also want to give thanks to the Bulls organization that did a great job promoting me, and most of all I want to thank my teammates and coaches for putting me in this position.” 

The Western Conference starters are Chris Paul, Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant and Carmelo Anthony. Yao Ming was the leading vote getter among centers, but since he is out for the season, Commissioner David Stern will select a replacement. The expectation is it will be Spurs forward/center Tim Duncan. Andrew Bynum was second in the voting and Nene third.

The coaches from each team vote for the seven reserves with coaches ineligible to vote for their own players. The results will be announced Feb 3. The Bulls Carlos Boozer and Luol Deng are considered possibilities.

Rose becomes the 12th Bull all-time to start an All-Star game with Michael Jordan having been selected 11 times and Scottie Pippen six times. A list and the years selected is at the bottom of this story.

Though Rose publicly said he would be just happy to be selected, privately he hoped for a starting selection from the fans. Early in the voting, Rose trailed Boston’s Rajon Rondo among guards after Wade, but Rose’s continued strong play and a publicity campaign by the Bulls apparently helped Rose’s candidacy. In the end, he almost caught Wade in moving to fewer than 100,000 voted behind. Rondo ended more than 300,00 behind Rose.

This is Rose’s second All-Star game appearance after he was voted to be a reserve last season. But Rose played at perhaps quarter speed last year in the game in Dallas after a nasty collision with Howard the game before All-Star break. Rose was able to play in the game, but had to cancel an appearance in the Skills Challenge, which he won in 2009. Rose is expected to be named to that contest again in a vote of fans.

The Bulls next play Orlando Friday, and Rose is expected to play despite being treated this week for an ulcer. Rose did not practice with the team Thursday and speculated the cause was the spicy food he eats. No mention of Skittles, though, some ulcers can be caused by improper diet. Ulcers generally are caused by a bacterial infection. They also can be caused by the use of anti-inflammatory medications, and players tend to use them frequently. 

Rose is having once again a career season with career highs in every statistical category in leading the Bulls to a 31-14 record and 13-game lead in the Central Division. Rose is averaging 24.6 points, seventh in the NBA, 8.1 assists, which is 10th overall. Rose is shooting 37.8 percent on three pointers and up to 81.9 percent on free throws and with a streak of block in nine straight games he is leading the NBA in blocks among point guards, ahead of such players as Chris Bosh, DeMarcus Cousins and Blake Griffin.

So with Rose locked in, there’s a chance the Bulls could get a second All-Star for the first time since Jordan and Pippen in 1997.

Although Luol Deng has had an overall solid season and hasn’t missed a game in averaging 17.4 points and 6.2 rebounds, Carlos Boozer should get strong support despite missing 18 games. Boozer is averaging 19.9 points and 10 rebounds, and probably has a chance for the last spot among East forwards.

Boston’s Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce figure to be voted among the forwards and Rondo as a guard. The coaches generally tend to favor players from winning teams and only Boston, New York, Miami, Orlando, Atlanta and the Bulls have winning records in the East, and the Knicks just barely.

Al Horford probably will be voted in to give Atlanta a representative while it would be difficult to make a case for anyone but Howard among the Magic players after their big trades. So that’s four reserves.

The voting for the remaining three spots should be among Boozer, Chris Bosh, Ray Felton, Ray Allen, Deng and perhaps Joe Johnson, though he was injured as well. The coaches pick two forwards, two guards, a center and two wild card selections. The game will be played in Los Angeles Feb. 20.

The selection for the Western Conference reserves will be much more difficult and controversial with someone deserving almost certain to be omitted.

The most deserving would seem to be Manu Ginobili, who has been the best player on the team with the best record, the Spurs, Deron Williams, Russell Westbrook, Dirk Nowitzki, Blake Griffin with his exciting rookie play, Pau Gasol since he can play center and the Lakers should get a second player, and then either LaMarcus Aldridge or Kevin Love. Love has the astounding statistics after just having put up his third 30/20 game, though, predictably, with another loss as Minnesota is just 10-35. In contrast despite the massive number of injuries, Portland is 25-21 in the playoff race thanks to Aldridge. You figure one of them doesn’t make it along with Tony Parker, Lamar Odom, Zach Randolph and high scorer Monte Ellis given the strength of Western Conference guards.

There have been 11 Bulls who have been All-Star game starters. In addition, Walt Bellamy was an All-Star game starter for the old Chicago Zephyrs in 1962, who changed their name to the Chicago Packers in 1963 when Bellamy was again a starter. The Bulls and their predecessor Zephyrs/Packers were in the Western Conference until 1980-81.

Here is a list of Bulls All-Star game starters and the years:

Michael Jordan, 11 times: 1985, 87, 88, 89, 90, 91, 92, 93, 96, 97, 98.

Scottie Pippen, six times: 1992, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97.

Artis Gilmore, two times: 1981, 82.

B.J. Armstrong, once: 1994.

Reggie Theus, once: 1981.

Norm Van Lier, once: 1977.

Chet Walker, once: 1974.

Bob Love, once: 1972.

Jerry Sloan, once: 1969.

Bob Boozer, once: 1968.

Guy Rodgers, once: 1967.

Here are the final vote totals:

2011 NBA ALL-STAR BALLOTING | EASTERN CONFERENCE

Forwards: LeBron James (Mia) 2,053,011; Amar’e Stoudemire (NYK) 1,674,995;
Kevin Garnett (Bos) 1,407,601; Paul Pierce (Bos) 804,838; Chris Bosh (Mia)
571,734; Carlos Boozer (Chi) 504,610; Danilo Gallinari (NYK) 390,658; Josh
Smith (Atl) 387,843; Luol Deng (Chi) 291,118; Danny Granger (Ind) 279,522.

Guards: Dwyane Wade (Mia) 2,048,175; Derrick Rose (Chi) 1,914,996; Rajon
Rondo (Bos) 1,587,297; Ray Allen (Bos) 890,951; Raymond Felton (NYK)
397,301; John Wall (Was) 337,368; Gilbert Arenas (Orl) 312,903; Brandon
Jennings (Mil) 301,225; Jamal Crawford (Atl) 246,130, Joe Johnson (Atl)
224,571.

Centers: Dwight Howard (Orl) 2,099,204; Shaquille O’Neal (Bos) 906,284;
Joakim Noah (Chi) 432,127; Andrew Bogut (Mil) 301,896; Al Horford (Atl)
287,083; Roy Hibbert (Ind) 250,614; Andrea Bargnani (Tor) 215,123; Brook
Lopez (NJ) 166,844; JaVale McGee (Was) 146,474; Ben Wallace (Det) 113,443.

2011 NBA ALL-STAR BALLOTING | WESTERN CONFERENCE

Forwards: Kevin Durant (OKC) 1,736,728; Carmelo Anthony (Den) 1,299,849;
Pau Gasol (LAL) 1,100,772; Blake Griffin (LAC) 1,033,646; Tim Duncan (SA)
839,599; Dirk Nowitzki (Dal) 785,120; Lamar Odom (LAL) 529,854; Kevin Love
(Min) 492,173; Luis Scola (Hou) 411,576; Rudy Gay (Mem) 284,021.

Guards: Kobe Bryant (LAL) 2,380,016; Chris Paul (NOH) 1,281,591; Manu
Ginobili (SA) 748,840; Steve Nash (Pho) 718,934; Russell Westbrook (OKC)
660,244; Deron Williams (Utah) 657,806; Tony Parker (SA) 436,958; Jason
Kidd (Dal) 394,793; Monta Ellis (GSW) 390,237; Vince Carter (Pho) 353,143.

Centers: Yao Ming (Hou) 1,146,426; Andrew Bynum (LAL) 974,546; Nene (Den)
599,048; Marc Gasol (Mem) 524,932; Emeka Okafor (NOH) 435,218; Brendan
Haywood (Dal) 352,811; Marcus Camby (Por) 279,026; Chris Kaman (LAC)
196,268; Andris Biedrins (GSW) 175,547; DeMarcus Cousins (Sac) 152,976.

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