Archive for Friday, February 10, 2006

Celtics’ Pierce named to All-Star team

February 10, 2006

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— Boston's Paul Pierce was named Thursday night as a reserve on the NBA All-Star team.

Detroit, meanwhile, was rewarded for one of the best starts in NBA history when four Pistons made the team as reserves.

Chauncey Billups, Richard Hamilton, Ben Wallace and Rasheed Wallace all were picked for the Eastern Conference team that will be led by Detroit coach Flip Saunders. Tayshaun Prince was the lone Pistons starter not chosen in voting by East head coaches.

Also named to the East team for the Feb. 19 game in Houston were Toronto's Chris Bosh and Vince Carter of the New Jersey Nets.

The Western Conference reserves are guards Ray Allen of Seattle and Tony Parker of San Antonio, and forwards Dirk Nowitzki of Dallas, the Clippers' Elton Brand, Memphis' Pau Gasol, Minnesota's Kevin Garnett and the Suns' Shawn Marion.

"I would just like to thank the coaches in the league for recognizing our players," Pistons president of basketball operations Joe Dumars told The Associated Press on Thursday night. "What the coaches are saying by voting our guys on is that they appreciate unselfishness, great attitudes and team basketball."

The Pistons (40-8) became the first team with four players in an All-Star game since the Los Angeles Lakers sent Shaquille O'Neal, Kobe Bryant, Eddie Jones and Nick Van Exel to the 1998 game in New York.

"I wish Tayshaun would be there," Hamilton said. "If that would have happened, that would have been incredible because it hasn't happened before. But it will be incredible to be there with those guys and if Flip plays us all at the same time that will be even more exciting."

Billups, the 2004 NBA Finals MVP, and Hamilton are among the five first-time selections, joining Bosh, Parker and Gasol.

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