The NBA All-Star Game is a great time for any NBA player. To hear your name being selected by not just the fans, but your peers and coaches makes the selection even more memorable, especially if you are selected for your first appearance in the February classic. For the Charlotte Hornets, the feeling is mutual as LaMelo Ball has been officially named to the All-Star Game as an injury replacement for Brooklyn Nets star and team captain Kevin Durant.
The biggest story coming from the recent announcement is that in LaMelo’s second year, he has not only won Rookie of the Year, but he was also named to participate in the Rising Stars game as a part of All Star Weekend.
LaMelo is the fourth youngest player in NBA history to be selected to the All-Star Game (Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Magic Johnson). What if I told you that LaMelo Ball is not the first Charlotte Hornets/Bobcats player to ever be selected to the NBA All-Star Game? Not counting LaMelo, there have been seven Charlotte Hornets/Bobcats players who have been selected to the All-Star Game, and I will give you an insight on all those players.
Larry Johnson: 1993 & 1995
Larry Johnson aka Grandmama had a successful tenure with the Charlotte Hornets in the early years of the franchise. In the 1992-93 NBA season, Johnson averaged 22.1 points which was a career high for him which allowed him to participate in the 1993 All-Star Game as a starter. With this being his first All-Star appearance, he was starting alongside Isiah Thomas, Scottie Pippen, Shaquille O’Neal and Michael Jordan on a team coached by Pat Riley.
In 1995, after missing 31 games the previous year with a sprained back, Johnson would make his second and final appearance in the All-Star Game as a reserve. With 20 minutes of play time, Larry Johnson would score seven points as the Western Conference would achieve victory 139 – 112.
Alonzo Mourning: 1994 & 1995
Alonzo Mourning is well known for his two stints with the Miami Heat which included an NBA Championship in 2006, but he spent the early part of his career with the Charlotte Hornets. In 1994, Zo was selected to his first All-Star Game as a reserve for the Eastern Conference squad. Unfortunately, Mourning couldn’t participate due to injury and was replaced by Charles Oakley.
In 1995, Mourning had another opportunity to participate in the All-Star Game. Alongside his Hornets teammate Larry Johnson, Alonzo made his second appearance in the All-Star Game. In 19 minutes on the court, Alonzo Mourning had 10 points with 8 rebounds. Mourning would make five more appearances in the All-Star Game with the Miami Heat.
Glen Rice: 1996, 1997 & 1998
After spending six seasons with the Miami Heat, Glen Rice was traded to the Charlotte Hornets for Alonzo Mourning and his career really thrived. In 1996, he was selected to his first All-Star Game with 296,143 votes. In 1997, Rice was named NBA All-Star Game MVP by scoring 26 points in 25 minutes, leading the East to a 132-120 victory over the West.
Glen Rice would make one more All-Star appearance the following year as a reserve for the Eastern Conference. In 16 minutes, Rice scored 16 points during the contest as the East defeated the West 135-114. In three All-Star Game appearances, Glen Rice averaged 16.3 points per game.
Eddie Jones: 2000
Eddie Jones would only play one and a half seasons with the Charlotte Hornets but made an impact with the team nonetheless. In 103 games, Jones was named to the All-Defensive team and was named All-NBA third team. In 2000, Jones would make his third and final All-Star appearance.
During this game, Eddie Jones was the lowest-voted starter for the Eastern Conference with 734,940 votes. In 21 minutes for the East, Jones scored 14 points, 4 rebounds and 3 assists. 2000 would be Eddie Jones’ last All-Star appearance in his career.
Baron Davis: 2002
Baron Davis was drafted by Charlotte Hornets in 1999 in the first round. Davis had his best statistical season in 2001, in which he played in all 82 games and averaged 18 points and around 8.5 assists per game. Due to an injury to Vince Carter, Davis made his only All-Star appearance in the 2002 NBA All-Star Game.
Only receiving 127,291 votes, Davis was an Eastern Conference reserve and in 13 minutes, he only scored 2 points. The West would win the game 135-120 and this would be the last All-Star Game that featured players wearing their respective team’s jerseys. Also, this would be the last All-Star game that was broadcasted on over the air television.
Gerald Wallace: 2010
After an eight-year absence from the game, Gerald Wallace became the only Charlotte Bobcat player to ever be selected to the All-Star Game. In 48 games, Wallace averaged 15.6 points per game, 8.2 rebounds and 2.4 assists. Wallace was also named NBA All-Defensive Team in 2010.
In 15 minutes of game time, Wallace only scored 2 points and had 3 rebounds. Wallace also participated in the 2010 NBA All Star Slam Dunk Contest in which he finished tied for third with Shannon Brown. Gerald Wallace’s 2010 selection was his only All-Star appearance.
Kemba Walker: 2017, 2018 & 2019
Finally, we get to the most recent Charlotte Hornets All-Star selection, the only other player to be selected three times to the game, Kemba Walker. Kemba Walker, during his eight year tenure with the Hornets, was selected to the All-Star Game three consecutive times. In 2017, with 20 minutes of play time, Walker scored 7 points and dished out 6 assists.
In 2018, the first season under the Team Captain platform, Kemba was selected and drafted under Team LeBron as a reserve. In 14 minutes, Walker scored 11 points helping Team LeBron win a high scoring matchup 148-145. Walker’s last All-Star appearance as a Hornet would be in 2019, in front of the Charlotte crowd as part of Team Giannis becoming a starter. In 20 minutes, Walker scored 4 points with 8 assists.
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