Kuminga added to Rising Stars Game at NBA All-Star Weekend

Jonathan Kuminga

The NBA has righted a wrong.

Warriors rookie Jonathan Kuminga has been added to the Rising Stars Game at NBA All-Star Weekend, the league announced Wednesday. Kuminga will replace Indiana Pacers rookie Chris Duarte, who has a toe injury.

The Athletic's Shams Charania first reported the news.

Kuminga's initial absence from the Rising Stars Game raised eyebrows, and Warriors star Klay Thompson was vocal about the NBA's error.

"His floor game," Thompson said on Feb. 7 when asked what has surprised him about Kuminga's game. "He's so good around the rim. He's really good in the post. His jump shot is very fluid. His IQ, to be 19 and make the impact he does, it's a travesty he's not in the rookie-sophomore game. That just doesn't make any sense. I don't know what the NBA was looking for in that one."

Thompson reiterated his stance Saturday night after Kuminga scored 18 points and played solid defense on LeBron James in the Warriors' win over the Los Angeles Lakers.

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The initial snub didn't ruffle Kuminga's feathers, though. The 19-year-old is focused on the bigger picture for himself and the Warriors.

"They did what they did," Kuminga said on Feb. 7. "I don't really worry about that as long as I'm still playing here, getting better every single day. Most of the time when you go to the Rising Stars Game, it's not really helping you work on your own craft. It's just a fun game. I mean, I would love to be there, but they passed on me, so I don't got to worry about that. I'm just focused on the future now and helping the team win and just getting better every day."


Kuminga has shown impressive growth during his rookie season and has earned a spot in the Warriors' playoff rotation.

Initial snub aside, Kuminga earned his spot in the Rising Stars Game, an event whose name perfectly describes the Warriors rookie.

The Clorox Rising Stars Game will take place Friday in Cleveland.

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