Add the 2021 NBA All-Star Weekend in Indianapolis to the long list of things the coronavirus (and haphazard national response to it) has taken away from us.
As expected, the NBA announced Wednesday that the 2021 NBA All-Star Game scheduled for next February in Indianapolis has been postponed. The city will host the game in 2024.
“While we are disappointed that the NBA All-Star Game will not take place in Indianapolis in 2021, we are looking forward to the Pacers and the city hosting the game and surrounding events in 2024,” NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said in a statement. “I want to thank Herb Simon, Steve Simon, Rick Fuson and the entire Pacers organization as well as the NBA All-Star 2021 Host Committee and the community of Indianapolis for working with us to reschedule our All-Star activities.”
The NBA is still going to have All-Star teams — with fans playing a role in the vote — and have some kind of recognition of the players. The league has not said anything about canceling the All-Star Game itself, however, getting players together for essentially an exhibition game during a pandemic would be an interesting choice. Of course, there are a lot of variables in play (that’s a big broadcast weekend for Turner/TNT). Bottom line, there will not be All-Star festivities in the traditional sense.
All the NBA officially said was, “Plans for a revised NBA All-Star 2021 will be announced at a later date.”
The next three All-Star Game locations are:
• 2022: Cleveland
• 2023: Salt Lake City
• 2024: Indianapolis
“We are excited about the opportunity to bring Indiana the very best All-Star experience in 2024,” Pacers owner Herb Simon said in a statement. “The efforts of so many Hoosiers to prepare for NBA All-Star 2021 put us ahead of the game for the hard work to come, and we are so grateful to the NBA for once again recognizing Indianapolis as a city that delivers world-class events.”