The NBA on Tuesday began its 2013 All-Star balloting process and five Chicago Bulls appear on the ballot this year.
Carlos Boozer, Luol Deng, Kirk Hinrich and Joakim Noah are names fans are used to seeing. The biggest surprise was reserve Taj Gibson, and in another cruel and sad reminder of Bulls’ fans current plight, Derrick Rose is not a voting option.
Still, Gibson is an interesting case because he certainly is one of the more talented players at his position. But with the new voting format, it’s going to be tough for him to make it in via fan vote.
There’s a new ‘Frontcourt’ category that features 36 players and is made up by a combination of small forwards, power forwards and centers, the latter being eliminated by the league as a separate category this year.
Aside from the new voting categories, the NBA is implementing new ways for fans to cast their votes. For the first time ever, fans can vote via social media networks, including Facebook and Twitter, and Sina Weibo and Tencent QQ in China.
Twitter voting will allow fans to tweet a vote for one player each day throughout the All-Star balloting period. The tweet must include a player’s first and last name, along with hash tag #NBABALLOT. Facebook voting will allow fans to fill out one full ballot (three frontcourt and two guards from each conference) per day, through a custom application on Facebook.
Fans can vote daily for their favorite Bulls players at Bulls.com/VoteBulls and through their mobile phones by texting the player's last name (BOOZER, DENG, GIBSON, HINRICH or NOAH) to 6-9-6-2-2 ("MYNBA") or by visiting NBA.com/ASB on any wireless device. Fans can vote for 10 different players per day, per phone number, via SMS voting by sending 10 separate SMS messages, each one with a different player's last name.
Balloting will conclude on Jan. 14, and starters will be announced live on TNT on Jan. 17, during a special one-hour pregame show at 6 p.m. featuring Ernie Johnson, Charles Barkley, Shaquille O’Neal and Kenny Smith.
The 62nd NBA All-Star Game will be televised on TNT from Toyota Center in Houston on Feb. 17.
So Bulls fans, cast your votes and let's get as many of our players in the game as we can!