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Monday, February 22, 2010
Jeanie Buss revamps the All-Star Game

By Brian Kamenetzky

For a variety of reasons, not the least of which are the explosion of the Internet and the NBA League Pass, I think the All-Star Game has lost much of its luster. Count me among those believing the whole weekend could use a shake-up. Along those lines, Lakers Executive VP of Business Operations Jeanie Buss has a killer idea to breathe new life into the All Star format.

Speaking to Fanhouse.com, she lays out her plan:
"I would do something really crazy with the All Star Game. This is something I've thought about a lot. I would like to see the fans vote for all the All Stars. Then you put them in a pool, and you take the two coaches and they draft the team right there, kind of like you used to do on a schoolyard. It wouldn't have anything to do with (Eastern Conference vs. Western Conference), it would just be all All-Stars, and then the coaches would decide which players they would take. Someone said (to me), "Well, whoever got taken last would be embarrassed." I thought, "OK, that's a good thing, because everybody's going to want to try and play hard."

I've heard any number of ideas on how to improve All-Star weekend, but this is by far the best. The picking of teams would be seriously compelling television. Kobe or LeBron? CP3 or Steve Nash? Forget the game, I'd pay just to watch that part.

And Jeanie is absolutely right about professional pride spurring hard play. Remember how much it sucked to be picked last during kickball in elementary school? (I don't, as my kickball skills were ample and highly-sought-after.) Or what it's like to be the last guy picked up at the rec? (This I know.) Or even have guys you think you're better than go before you?

Imagine how much having their relative worth (relatively speaking) determined in front of millions of people would motivate the players. Nothing like poking egos to spark a good show.

It'll never happen, but with the game heading to L.A. next year, I wish it would.

(via Silver Screen and Roll)