NBA All Star Tickets


The National Basketball Association staged its first All-Star Game in the Boston Garden on March 2, 1951. From that year on, the game has matched the best players in the Eastern Conference with the best players in the Western Conference. The participants are currently chosen in two ways. The first is via fan ballot, with the leading vote recipients at each position starting the game; secondly the reserves are chosen by a vote among the head coaches of each squad’s particular conference. Coaches are not allowed to vote for their own players. If a player is injured and cannot participate, the commissioner will select a replacement.

The coaches who currently lead the teams with the most wins in their conference through the Sunday two weeks before the game coach their respective conferences. However, the same coach cannot coach the team in consecutive seasons. This is the so-called “Riley Rule” so named because coach Pat Riley’s Lakers teams of the 1980s won so often that he coached the Western Conference team eight times in nine seasons from 1982 to 1990. In the event that a coach’s team repeats as the best record holder the coach from the team with the second best record will serve as All-Star coach for that conference.

The All-Star Game is played under normal NBA rules, but there are notable differences from an average game. Since the starting All-Stars are selected by fan vote, players sometimes start the game at atypical positions. For instance, in 2007 Kobe Bryant and Tracy McGrady had the two highest fan vote totals among Western Conference guards. As both players normally play shooting guard, Bryant, who is 6’6″, started the game as a point guard, a position usually manned by a much smaller player.

typically sings “The Star-Spangled Banner” prior to tip-off. One of the more memorable performances was given by Marvin Gaye during the 1983 game. Gaye was accompanied by Gordon Banks, who played a tape from an all night session that used numerous elements of soul music and funk. Banks still has that historic tape of the music to which Gaye sang his soulful version.

Gameplay usually involves players attempting spectacular slam dunks and alley oops. Defensive effort is limited and the final score of the game is generally much higher than an average NBA game. The coaches also try to give most of the reserve players some time on the court instead of using a limited rotation as they would in a normal game. The fourth quarter of the game is often played in a more competitive fashion if the game is close. NBA All-Star tickets are a definite luxury; the stars come out every year to cheer on their favorite players.