Adam Silver sees a path to a more competitive NBA All-Star Game


SAN FRANCISCO – NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said Monday he will “take responsibility” for the lack of intensity seen at recent NBA All-Star Games – a realization he came to after speaking with the 13-time All-Star came Chris Paul.

Silver, speaking to ESPN’s Andscape, said Paul recently pointed out to him all the pregame and halftime distractions of the All-Star Game that are interfering with players’ normal gameplay.

As Paul put it, according to Silver: “You tell us how important the All-Star Game is, but then you change all of our pre-game protocols so that we don’t go through our typical routines like we would before a game, because you did this.” These detailed introductions. No complaint about the introductions. We understand why you do that, but then you expect us to go out there and be in the mindset that we’re going to play a typical basketball game.”

Silver said Paul also mentioned the extended halftime, which was several minutes longer than usual for game entertainment.

“That’s why I say I take responsibility for it,” Silver told Andscape. “We are sending mixed signals. And if we want the boys to treat it like a real game, and again, this isn’t about the intensity of the final, it’s just a fun game. But if we want the players to treat it that way, then that’s what we did. Treating it that way. And that means the introduction needs to be a little shorter and the halftime break a little more typical, starting in Indianapolis.

The 2024 NBA All-Star Game will take place on February 18th Indiana Pacers“Gainbridge Fieldhouse. Silver said there will be less fanfare during the pre-game and half-time rollouts to give players a more normal playing experience and hope for a better performance.

At the 2023 NBA All-Star Game captains Lebron James And Giannis Antetokounmpo The teams were previously selected in Salt Lake City. After the lengthy process, some players had to change dressing rooms to join the captain who selected them.

Last month it was announced that the The 2024 edition will return to its traditional format Eastern Conference vs. Western Conference format. The top selectors from both conferences will no longer serve as captains and draft players, a selection process that has taken place during the last six NBA All-Star Games.

While Silver acknowledged that a return to the old format doesn’t guarantee more intensity, he is optimistic about a better All-Star Game. Silver added that NBA Executive Vice President and Head of Basketball Operations Joe Dumars, a six-time NBA All-Star, will also play a big role in teaching the All-Stars the importance of commitment.

“That doesn’t necessarily mean they’re doing lockdown defense,” Silver said. “Maybe that will happen at the end of the fourth quarter. That means the guys come out and say, ‘It’s a game. Let’s try to win it.’ And again, I think we need to get this message across to the players.

“I assume that we will have some entertainment at halftime. But it won’t be that long anymore. I realize this is not the Super Bowl. Get the guys back on stage in a more reasonable time.”

Additionally, there will no longer be a goal score in the fourth quarter and the game will return to a standard 12-minute, four-quarter contest.

“When it comes to [All-Star] “We have to make it clear to everyone involved, including the coaches, that we are aiming for a basketball game,” Silver said.

Former Golden State Warriors star Chris Mullin, who attended Monday’s announcement ceremony The Chase Center in San Francisco will host the 2025 All-Star Gameplayed in five All-Star showcases during his Hall of Fame career.

Mullin said the key to making these All-Star Games competitive is having two NBA superstars, Magic Johnson and Larry Bird, leading the way.

“The top guys have to set the standard comparable to Bird and Magic,” Mullin told Andscape. “They didn’t want to give an inch because they would see each other again in four months [in the NBA Finals].”

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