The NBA and New Jersey Nets announced that MarShon Brooks joins Kyrie Irving, Ricky Rubio, and six other rookies in the game before the All-Star game that used to pit the best rookies against the best sophomores.
This year, the teams will have some cross-pollination, with Charles Barkley and Shaquille O’Neal acting as captains making selections for what’s now known as the “Rising Stars Challenge.”
Brooks is the lowest draft selection of any rookie invited and the only one selected outside of the top 15. (Kawhi Leonard, drafted 15th, is the only other non-lottery pick.) Brooks is 2nd among qualifying rookies in points per game, 3rd in PER, and 3rd in estimated wins added, despite missing nine games (eight with a broken toe). It’s unclear whether he’ll be healthy enough to play, as the team won’t have any further information on his progress until Sunday.
Congrats to MarShon Brooks, and as Matt Moore said, hopefully Shaq doesn’t pick you just to pick on you.