NEW YORK – Reigning Kia NBA Rookie of the Year Ben Simmons of the Philadelphia 76ers, 2017-18 Rookie of the Year runner-up Donovan Mitchell of the Utah Jazz and two-time reigning Kia NBA Western Conference Rookie of the Month Luka Dončić of the Dallas Mavericks lead the list of 20 players selected by NBA assistant coaches to play in the 2019 MTN DEW ICE Rising Stars on Friday, Feb. 15 at 9 p.m. ET at Spectrum Center in Charlotte, N.C.
The 25th Rising Stars will pit 10 first- and second-year NBA players from the United States against 10 first- and second-year NBA players from around the world in the league’s annual showcase of premier young talent during NBA All-Star. MTN DEW ICE will serve as the title partner, expanding on its continued commitment to supporting up-and-coming stars throughout the sport. MTN DEW ICE Rising Stars will air live in the U.S. on TNT and ESPN Radio. Tickets are available at NBAEvents.com.
In addition to Mitchell, the U.S. Team features Brooklyn Nets center Jarrett Allen, Sacramento Kings forward Marvin Bagley III and guard De’Aaron Fox, Los Angeles Lakers guard Lonzo Ball and forward Kyle Kuzma, Atlanta Hawks forward/center John Collins and guard Trae Young, Memphis Grizzlies forward/center Jaren Jackson Jr. and Boston Celtics forward Jayson Tatum.
Simmons (Australia) and Dončić (Slovenia) are joined on the World Team by Toronto Raptors forward OG Anunoby (United Kingdom), Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton (Bahamas), Kings guard Bogdan Bogdanović (Serbia), LA Clippers guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (Canada), Nets forward Rodions Kurucs (Latvia), Chicago Bulls forward Lauri Markkanen (Finland), Minnesota Timberwolves guard Josh Okogie (Nigeria) and Cleveland Cavaliers forward Cedi Osman (Turkey).
Each participant on the World Team’s 10-player roster hails from a different country, with four continents represented (North America, Africa, Europe and Australia). The World Team also includes three players who participated as campers in Basketball Without Borders (BWB), the NBA and FIBA’s global basketball development and community outreach program: Ayton (BWB Global 2016), Gilgeous-Alexander (BWB Global 2016) and Markkanen (BWB Europe 2014; BWB Global 2015).
Boston’s Kyrie Irving (U.S. Team) and Dallas’ Dirk Nowitzki (World Team) will serve as honorary coaches in MTN DEW ICE Rising Stars. The official Rising Stars head coaches will be an assistant coach from each 2019 NBA All-Star Game coaching staff. The All-Star Game coaching staffs are determined by the best record in each conference through games played on Sunday, Feb. 3.
Irving, a six-time NBA All-Star selection who will start this year’s All-Star Game, was the 2012 Rising Stars MVP. Nowitzki, a 13-time All-Star from Germany, ranks seventh on the NBA’s all-time points list (31,254) and is the career scoring leader among international players. He played in the 2000 Rising Stars.
Inspired by Charlotte’s basketball origins, the Nike-designed Rising Stars uniforms put a modern twist on the jerseys worn by the American Basketball Association’s Carolina Cougars in the 1960s and 1970s. The U.S. Team’s light blue uniform and the World Team’s charcoal uniform both feature a MTN DEW ICE jersey patch. MTN DEW ICE Rising Stars uniform images are attached and available here.
NBA assistant coaches selected the Rising Stars rosters, with each of the league’s 30 teams submitting one ballot per coaching staff. A ballot consisted of four frontcourt players, four guards and two additional players at either position group for each team. Voters also had to choose a minimum of three first-year NBA players and three second-year NBA players for each team. Coaches were not permitted to vote for any player on their team.
MTN DEW ICE Rising Stars will showcase a U.S. vs. World format for the fifth straight year. In last year’s event, the World Team defeated the U.S. Team 155-124. Sacramento’s Bogdanović was named the 2018 Rising Stars MVP after making seven three-pointers and finishing with 26 points, six assists and four rebounds.
NBA opening-night rosters for the 2018-19 season featured 108 international players from a record-tying 42 countries and territories. This marked the fifth consecutive season that opening-night rosters included at least 100 international players and that all 30 teams had at least one international player.
Below are the rosters for the 2019 MTN DEW ICE Rising Stars and a list of past results.
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About NBA All-Star 2019
NBA All-Star 2019 in Charlotte, N.C., will bring together the most talented and passionate players in the league’s history for a global celebration of the game. The 68th NBA All-Star Game, which will take place on Sunday, Feb. 17 at Spectrum Center, will reach fans in more than 200 countries and territories in more than 40 languages. TNT will televise the All-Star Game for the 17th consecutive year, marking Turner Sports’ 34th year of NBA All-Star coverage. Spectrum Center will also host MTN DEW ICE Rising Stars on Friday, Feb. 15 and State Farm All-Star Saturday Night on Saturday, Feb. 16. The NBA All-Star Celebrity Game presented by Ruffles and NBA All-Star Practice & Media Day will take place at Bojangles’ Coliseum.