The results from the first wave of NBA All-Star votes are in and, to no surprise, LeBron James leads all vote-getters with an astounding 1,083,363 votes. The next closest vote-getter is Giannis Antetokounmpo, who has received 991,561 votes.
However, James isn’t the only player from the Los Angeles Lakers receiving a large number of All-Star votes. Lonzo Ball and Kyle Kuzma also finished among the top-10 vote getters in their respective positions. Kuzma leads Ball by around 20,000 votes.
Here’s the full breakdown of how the fans have voted so far:
LeBron/Steph and Giannis/Kyrie lead the first returns of #NBAAllStar Voting 2019 presented by @Google!— 2019 NBA All-Star (@NBAAllStar) January 3, 2019
Vote on https://t.co/R6fBO5LSAS, the NBA App or by searching for your favorite player or team on Google.
Vote now! https://t.co/gcW4K59HC0 pic.twitter.com/JIZFyIC2Pu
It’s no shock that Ball and Kuzma are getting so many votes despite not putting up All-Star numbers this season.
Lakers fans love their players, especially if they’ve been with the team since the beginning. For example, in 2017, Jordan Clarkson finished sixth among guards in All-Star fan voting, which was notably higher than Damian Lillard. Last season, he finished just outside the top-10. This season — his first full season in Cleveland — he’s not in the top-10.
Ball and Kuzma might not make the All-Star game, but that won’t stop fans from voting for them more than they vote for players like Chris Paul, Devin Booker and Draymond Green. Say what you will about Lakers fans, but they ride hard for their team.
Another storyline that comes from the early voting returns is that James will likely be a captain in the All-Star game again. That’s especially interesting this year because the NBA All-Star Draft will be televised after James publicly campaigned for it last year.
Will he pick Kawhi Leonard and Anthony Davis to start recruiting them during All-Star weekend? Will he pick Kevin Durant just to bother him with the toxic environment he apparently brings?
Only time will tell, and when that time comes, it promises to be glorious.