What is Playground Style?
The NBA revamped the 2017-18 All-Star Game, eliminating the traditional East vs. West teams. The starters were selected by a combination of 50 percent fan, 25 percent player and 25 percent basketball media voting. The two starters with the most votes were named captains, and the 14 reserves were selected by NBA head coaches. But then ... the captains selected their teams, regardless of conference, playground style.
In honor of the new format, we're giving you the opportunity to pick your own All-Star squad against a computer captain who "thinks" like a traditional All-Star voter. (Hint: Our CPU loves scoring.) Then we'll use ESPN's real plus/minus (RPM) to simulate your roster against the computer's to see which captain owns the All-Star playground. And just like real basketball, no two games will play out exactly the same -- so keep playing until you pick your way to All-Star glory.
You sent Team Stephen home with the L!
You lost to Team Stephen ... there's always next year.
You lost to Team LeBron ... there's always next year.
Team LeBron has no answer for you!
It's a tie!
You've chosen wisely. Steph and his picks were no match for LeBron's collection of superstars.
Congratulations! Time to add to King James' trophy case ... you know, behind all the rings and MVPs.
Another loss to Steph Curry. This must be getting a bit old by now, isn't it?
Tough break, another loss. Don't worry though, you can always change teams this summer.
Congratulations! It looks like Chef Curry put together the right recipe for a winning team.
Great job, you put together a team that's almost as impressive as Stephen Curry's warm-up routine.
If you come at the King, you best not miss. Are you even trying?
You really thought you could dethrone the King and all his men? Think again.
I can't believe you tied! Try again.
Your turn to pick a captain.
Player Ratings Key
To help you pick your players, FiveThirtyEight's Neil Paine graded each player on a scale from 3 (lowest) to 1 (highest) using the following metrics:
Build your own NBA All-Star Team!
It's All-Star Weekend 2018, and you've been selected as one of the two best players in the world. The other guy is your on-court rival and critics say he's the best player in the game. Now it's time to pick your squad, playground style. Are you up for the challenge?
By Neil Paine