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Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell will play for Team Giannis in NBA All-Star Game

Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert (27) is squirted by Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell (45) after the game with the Dallas Mavericks at Vivint Arena in Salt Lake City on Saturday, Jan. 25, 2020. The Jazz won 112-107.
Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News

SALT LAKE CITY — Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert may have been named NBA All-Stars already, but there was still one more thing to clear up before heading to Chicago. Team Giannis? Or, Team LeBron?

The Jazz teammates will be teammates in the NBA All-Star 2020 game as well, both joining Team Giannis.

Team captains Giannis Antetokounmpo and LeBron James took turns selecting from the pool of All-Stars to form the teams that will be competing in the headlining game in Chicago on Feb. 16.

The All-Star draft was broadcast on Thursday evening during Inside the NBA on TNT with James and Antetokounmpo first choosing from the All-Star starters and then reserves.

Antetokounmpo chose Gobert with his seventh selection and took Mitchell with his last pick of the night.

NBA

During the All-Star draft broadcast, in a prerecorded package, NBA legend Baron Davis noted that the last person selected in the All-Star draft could go into the game looking to prove something.

“You may be the last person drafted but that creates that chip on your shoulder,” he said.

We’ll see how Mitchell takes being one of the last names taken off the board, but both James and Antetokounmpo noted that there were no bad choices and that each player featured in the All-Star game is elite and deserving.

“You cannot go wrong, they are the 24 best players in the world,” Antetokounmpo said of the All-Star pool and picking his team. “You want to pick guys that are going to have fun with you.”

While Mitchell did mention that it would be fun for him to play for his boyhood hero James, he said that what he really cared about was playing with Gobert.

“I’d rather just play with Rudy, does that make sense?” Mitchell said Wednesday. “I don’t mean to sound corny when I say it, but seriously I think that would be cool for us to enjoy the moment together.”

Both players are making their All-Star debuts in a year with a new format. Each of the first three quarters will be a game of its own with reset scores and the winner of each period getting $100,000 donated to charity. The fourth quarter will take the running score from the first three quarters and add 24 to the leading score in honor of Kobe Bryant. The first team to reach the new total (high score plus 24) will win $200,000 for charity.

Team Giannis will play for After School Matters, a nonprofit that provides after-school and summer program opportunities to nearly 19,000 Chicago teenagers each year. Team LeBron will play for Chicago Scholars, a nonprofit that empowers academically ambitious students from under-resourced communities to complete college.