NBA All-Star Game Returns to Original East vs. West Format

INDIANAPOLIS — The NBA All-Star Game is set to return to its traditional format this season in Indianapolis, marking a significant change in the event’s structure, as confirmed by the league on Wednesday.

Scheduled to be held on February 18 at the Gainbridge Fieldhouse, the All-Star Game will once again showcase an Eastern Conference team facing off against a Western Conference team, each composed of 12 players from their respective conferences.

This shift effectively ends the All-Star draft that has been a part of the event for the past six seasons, with team captains now being determined through fan voting of the five starters on each team.

NBA commissioner Adam Silver, in a statement to reporters, highlighted the theme for this year’s game as ‘Back to basketball.’ This adjustment will also bring back the traditional format of a standard 12-minute, four-quarter contest, eliminating the target score that was introduced in the fourth quarter in recent years.

In a recent appearance on ESPN’s “First Take,” Silver hinted at potential changes in the event’s format, expressing the desire for a return to a more traditional presentation of the teams. He emphasized the importance of reinforcing the event’s significance for fans, aiming to provide a competitive game, even if it falls short of playoff intensity.

The return to the classic East vs. West format is expected to rejuvenate the excitement and competitive spirit of the NBA All-Star Game, a shift that fans and players are eager to experience in the upcoming season.