Detroit Pistons rookies Jaden Ivey and Jalen Duren have been selected to participate in the 2023 Jordan Rising Stars game as part of NBA All-Star Weekend.
It’s not surprising that Ivey, who leads all rookies in assists and is third in points, and Duren, who leads all rookies in rebounds, are being asked to take part in the young-player showcase set for Feb. 17 at 9 p.m. on TNT.
The format invites 28 players — 11 rookies, 10 sophomores and seven G League players in a bracket tournament format. It’s good to see the NBA experimenting with new formats as All-Star games of all stripes have grown largely uncompetitive and stale. And they didn’t shy away from embracing new in this year’s Rising Stars game.
There will be three NBA teams of seven players and one team of seven G League players. In the semi-final game, there will be a target score of 40 points, and in the finals, a target score of 25 points.
This is the first season in Pistons history that Detroit has two rookies in the same Rising Stars game. Last year, rookie Cade Cunningham made it along with sophomores Isaiah Stewart and Saddiq Bey.
Ivey is averaging 15.1 points, 4.1 rebounds, 4.5 assists and 0.9 steals in 30 minutes per game. Duren is averaging 8.4 points, 8.5 rebounds, 1.0 assists and 0.8 blocks and is shooting 66% from the field.
This is honestly the first time in a while that I can say the Pistons have players tailor-made for NBA All-Star weekend festivities. Ivey is going to obliterate the rim assuming they play the same sort of lax defense we’re used to, and Duren is going to deliver plenty of offensive rebounds and power dunks.
Previously, with players like Cunningham, Bey and Stewart in Rising Stars or Andre Drummond (former Rising Stars MVP!) in the All-Star Game, Detroit ran out players that were either more below-the-rim guys or big men who struggle to really show out in the exhibition format.
Even the year Drummond delivered that aforementioned Rising Stars MVP, it was more about box score stuffing than it was about cool highlight plays. And let’s be real, this is all about delivering a few highlights, getting the crowd hyped, and not getting injured.
The full Rising Stars roster is as follows:
Rookies and Sophomores
- Paolo Banchero, Orlando Magic
- Jalen Duren, Detroit Pistons
- AJ Griffin, Atlanta Hawks
- Jaden Ivey, Detroit Pistons
- Walker Kessler, Utah Jazz
- Bennedict Mathurin, Indiana Pacers
- Keegan Murray, Sacramento Kings
- Andrew Nembhard, Indiana Pacers
- Jabari Smith Jr., Houston Rockets
- Jeremy Sochan, San Antonio Spurs
- Jalen Williams, Oklahoma City Thuner
- Jose Alvarado, New Orleans Pelicans
- Scottie Barnes, Toronto Raptors
- Josh Giddey, Oklahoma City Thunder
- Jalen Green, Houston Rockets
- Quentin Grimes, New York Knicks
- Bones Hyland, Denver Nuggets
- Evan Mobley, Cleveland Cavaliers
- Trey Murphy III, New Orleans Pelicans
- Alperen Sengun, Houston Rockets
- Franz Wagner, Orlando Magic
G League Players
Scoot Henderson, Sidy Cissoko, Mojave King, Kenneth Lofton Jr., Leonard Miller, Mac McClung, Scotty Pippen Jr.