(The Sports Xchange) – The NBA and its Players Association announced Tuesday a new format for the 2018 NBA All-Star Game in Los Angeles that will abandon the traditional Eastern Conference versus Western Conference matchup.
Under the new format, two captains will pick the teams from a pool of 24 players who were voted in by fans, media and fellow players. The captains will be the top vote-getters from each conference as chosen by the fans.
“I‘m thrilled with what the players and the league have done to improve the All-Star Game, which has been a priority for all of us,” NBPA president Chris Paul of the Houston Rockets said in a statement. “We’re looking forward to putting on an entertaining show in L.A.”
The voting process and process to pick the head coaches will remain unchanged. Additionally, each team will select a Los Angeles-based or national charity to raise donations for.
“We’re excited about the new All-Star format and appreciate the players’ willingness to try something new,” said Byron Spruell, the league’s president of league operations.
The 67th annual All-Star Game takes place February 18 at Staples Center.