Garnett named starter in All-Star Game

Celtics forward Kevin Garnett is headed to his 13th NBA All-Star Game after being voted a starter in fan balloting, the league announced Thursday night.

Garnett finished second in voting among Eastern Conference forwards and will join LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Allen Iverson and Dwight Howard in this year's starting lineup. The game will be played Feb. 14 at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

Garnett was sixth overall in the fan balloting with 1,978,116 votes. James led all players with 2,549,693 votes, followed by Kobe Bryant, Howard, Wade and Carmelo Anthony. Only Shaquille O'Neal among active players has made more All-Star teams than Garnett.

Garnett, in his 15th season, has been an All-Star in every season except his rookie campaign (the NBA did not have an All-Star Game in 1999 because of the lockout). Garnett traveled, but did not appear in the 2008 game, but has played in 11 others, with nine starts. His best All-Star moment came in 2003 when he was named MVP after pouring in 37 points on 17-of-24 shooting over 41 minutes.

The Celtics are hoping Garnett will be joined by teammates Paul Pierce and Rajon Rondo when All-Star reserves, who are voted on by NBA coaches, are announced later this month.

"You kind of assume Kevin and Paul," said Celtics coach Doc Rivers, when asked last week if he phoned his fellow coaches to lobby for other players. "Then the other three [starters] you've got to call for. And get lied to. [Opposing coaches tell me,] 'Of course, I'll vote.' I think every coach tells you that."