The first fan returns are in and to no one’s surprise, Damian Lillard is one of the NBA All-Star’s top vote-getters.
The Trail Blazers guard came in at third among Western Conference guards on Thursday with 998,853 votes, just behind the Golden State Warriors’ Stephen Curry (2,113,178 votes) and Dallas Mavericks’ Luka Doncic (1,395,719).
With Jusuf Nurkic, CJ McCollum, and a plethora of other Portland players hampered by injuries, Lillard has done what he does best-- step up when the Trail Blazers need it. The NBA superstar has averaged 32.4 points, 4.7 rebounds and 8.0 assists over his last seven games, including another wild buzzer-beater over the Bulls on Jan. 30.
If selected to the big game, Lillard would make the All-Star squad for a sixth time. He was named NBA Western Conference in 2014, 2015, 2018, 2019 and 2020.
Many felt Lillard was snubbed as All-Star starter in 2020. Despite tallying the third-most fan votes, third-most votes from fellow NBA players and being the only guard to receive any media votes besides James Harden and Luka Doncic, Lillard was named a reserve while Mavs point-forward Doncic got the starting nod.
Lillard’s backcourt mate McCollum also ranked 8th among guards with 104,965 votes, despite suffering a foot fracture. Forward Carmelo Anthony is 10th amongst West frontcourt players with 179,310 votes.
This is merely the first round of voting results for the All-Star game which is rumored to be held in March. This is the fan vote, which will count for 50% of the total tally. Media (25%) and players (25%) make up the other half of voting to determine the starters. Coaches will select the reserves.
Voting counts twice on Thursday, so if you want to help your Trail Blazers favorite get into the big game, cast your vote at NBA.com/vote or the NBA app on Twitter using the hashtags #NBAAllStar #FirstNameLastName.
The Trail Blazers take the court on Thursday night at 5:00 p.m. against the Philadelphia 76ers.