Feb 17, 2013; Houston, TX, USA; Eastern Conference guard/forward Paul George (24) of the Indiana Pacers dunks against the Western Conference all-stars during the first half of the 2013 NBA All-Star Game at the Toyota Center. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Pacers' George to Start for East All-Stars

Weeks of voting allowed fans to cast their opinions on who they believe are currently the best players in the NBA. That is taking into account injuries (Derrick Rose, Kobe Bryant, Russell Westbrook) and age (Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, Vince Carter).

Without further ado, and as expected, the NBA announced each conference’s starting lineups for the 2014 All-Star Game in New Orleans, LA. The Indiana Pacers will send Paul George to NOLA as one of those starters, thanks to fan voting and a stellar first half of the season from George. Joining him in the starting lineup will be Kyrie Irving, Dwayne Wade, LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony.

January 20, 2014; Oakland, CA, USA; Indiana Pacers small forward Paul George (24) shoots the ball against Golden State Warriors point guard Stephen Curry (30) during the third quarter at Oracle Arena. The Pacers defeated the Warriors 102-94. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

PG began the season playing MVP-caliber basketball, and maybe still is playing at that level. He has been in MVP discussions throughout the season after having a breakout year in 2012-13 and earning a reserve role on last season’s Eastern Conference All-Star team.

Through 41 games, George is averaging 23.3 points, 6.2 rebounds, 3.4 assists and 1.8 steals in 36 minutes per game. PG is also shooting 46% from the floor, including 39% from beyond the three-point arc.

Much of the credit is due to the work George puts in during the offseason in California and back here in Indianapolis. It can also be credited to his teammates, who look for him when they need a basket or at the end of a close game. George is nothing shy of a leader, even at age 23, for the emerging and potentially title-contending Indiana Pacers.

Over the course of 3+ seasons in the league, the Fresno State product and former No. 10 overall draft pick by Indiana has steadily improved his numbers each year.

It suddenly became more evident when former Pacers leading scorer Danny Granger was injured that George would be asked to take on a bigger role. Safe to say, PG has done that and more.

Courtesy of the fan voting, George is the youngest Pacer to be an All-Star starter at age 23.

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