NBA Announces 2021 NBA Rising Stars Rosters

New York Knicks shooting guard RJ Barrett (9) and New Orleans Pelicans small forward Zion Williamson (1) talk after a game at Madison Square Garden.

While the Rising Stars game itself will not be a part of the All-Star festivities this season, the NBA still took time to recognize some of the league’s brightest young talents. On Wednesday morning, the league announced the rosters for Team World and Team USA.

Pelicans forward Zion Williamson highlights the selections for Team USA. Williamson is averaging 25.5 points, 7.2 rebounds, and 3.4 assists per game so far this season. Four of the ten players rostered for Team USA are rookies this season (Ball, Edwards, Wiseman, and Haliburton).

Team World features six different countries this year. Canada leads Team World in players selected, with four of the ten players sporting red and white. Seven teams from around the league have at least two players playing for either team.

Oklahoma City is well-represented, as both Lugentz Dort and rookie Theo Maledon were selected for the game. Dort is best known for his tenacious on-ball defense, as clips of him defending LeBron James and other marquee players have gone viral on social media this season. Maledon is having a solid first season off the bench for the Thunder. Maledon is averaging 7.7 points and 3.3 assists per game in 29 games so far. His experience playing in the French professional league has been evident in his first few league games so far.

Fans were quick to take to social media to express their complaints after Knicks rookie guard Immanuel Quickley did not make the cut. A native of Havre de Grace, Maryland, Quickley would have been representing Team USA. The former Kentucky wildcat has had an impressive inaugural year for the Knicks. Quickley is averaging 12.6 points while shooting 39% from beyond the arc this season.

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