Toronto Raptors

NBA All-Star Game 2020: Toronto Raptors forward Pascal Siakam named an Eastern Conference All-Star starter for the first time

The Toronto Raptors will indeed have a starter to represent the franchise at the 2020 NBA All-Star game.

Pascal Siakam was named Eastern Conference starters on Thursday - his first All-Star appearance. He becomes the seventh Raptor to appear and start in the All-Star Game.

Siakam's selection to the starting lineup was expected. He's become the go-to player for the defending NBA Champions with Leonard taking his talents to Los Angeles. He's gone from having the ball in his hands only when needed to a usage rate of 28.9% - by far a career-high.

Siakam has turned that usage rate into averages of 23.5 points, 7.7 rebounds, 3.5 assists shooting 36.7% from three-point range.

His impact on a night to night basis has him 15th in the NBA in Real Plus-Minus according to ESPN. Ahead of fellow All-Star starters Joel Embiid and Kemba Walker.

Despite being named as All-Star starters for the Eastern Conference, Siakam could end up an opponent of his Raptor teammate Kyle Lowry who most expected to be announced as a reserve next week.

Should Lowry be announced as a reserve, they'll both be put into the draft pool where captains Giannis Antetokounmpo and LeBron James will have a chance to draft them to their individual teams.

The All-Star draft will take place on Thursday, February 6th.

Final voting results to come.

Key dates ahead of the 2020 NBA All-Star Game

All-Star starters announced: Jan. 23
All-Star reserves announced: Jan. 30
All-Star Draft: Feb. 6
Rising Stars Challenge and Celebrity Game: Feb. 14
3-Point Shootout and Slam Dunk Contest: Feb. 15
2020 NBA All-Star Game: Feb. 16

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