Porzingis tore the ACL in his left knee in the second quarter of a loss to the Milwaukee Bucks on Tuesday night.
#BuzzCity Guard @KembaWalker has been named by NBA Commissioner Adam Silver to replace injured Knicks Forward #KristapsPorzingis on #TeamLeBron in the 2018 #NBAAllStar Game. pic.twitter.com/hvBaFqTQF5
— 2018 NBA All-Star (@NBAAllStar) February 8, 2018
Walker was named an all-star for the first time in his career last season and made a strong case once again with averages of 22.6 points, 3.4 rebounds and 5.8 assists. The only thing going against him is Charlotte’s record: 10th in the Eastern Conference at 23-30 heading into Thursday’s action.
Philadelphia 76ers rookie Ben Simmons was a contender to replace Porzingis with averages of 16.6 points, 7.8 rebounds and 7.2 assists, but it’s quite possible the league didn’t see the need for two representatives for a team barely over the .500 mark. (Centre Joel Embiid will be there representing the 26-25 76ers.)
The Hornets will now hope that Walker doesn’t fall victim to the curse of being on Team LeBron, as Porzingis joins DeMarcus Cousins, John Wall, and Kevin Love on the list of players who have suffered serious injuries since getting selected to the team.