Dwight Howard highlights reserves


The Houston Rockets and Portland Trail Blazers each had two players picked Thursday as reserves for the NBA All-Star Game, while the Indiana Pacers had to settle for one despite owning the league's best record.

Dwight Howard, who was passed late in fan voting for a starting spot, was chosen along with Houston teammate James Harden.

LaMarcus Aldridge and Damian Lillard made it for the Trail Blazers, who have been among the Western Conference leaders all season.

From Indiana, Roy Hibbert joined Paul George, who was voted to start. The Pacers had hoped Lance Stephenson, who leads the NBA in triple-doubles, also would be selected.

Howard was voted into his eighth straight All-Star Game, highlighting his first season with the Rockets in which he has helped place them firmly in the playoff hunt.

Averaging 18.1 points and 12.5 rebounds per game -- just a shade less than his career averages of 18.3 and 12.9 -- Howard extended a streak that dates to his third season in the league.

Lillard, the reigning rookie of the year, made the team for his first All-Star selection.

The All-Star reserves, selected through a vote by their respective conferences' coaches, were announced Thursday on TNT for the Feb. 16 game in New Orleans. The coaches were not allowed to vote for their own players.

Starters were revealed last week.

The East reserves were highlighted by Chris Bosh of the Miami Heat, who has made nine consecutive All-Star teams.

Joe Johnson was named to his seventh All-Star team, his first with the Brooklyn Nets.

Roy Hibbert and Joakim Noah made their second All-Star squads, with  DeMar DeRozan making his first appearance in his fifth season.

"I'm just happy," said Noah, the Bulls center. "I'm honored to be selected to play in the All-Star Game, play against the best players in the world. It's very humbling. I'm happy the hard work is paying off. Even though it's not my priority, it's still a pretty good achievement. I'm proud of it."

John Wall of the Washington Wizards and the Atlanta Hawks' Paul Millsap also were named to the East squad.

"I am very proud to represent the Wizards franchise and the city of Washington as an All-Star and to share this honor with the fans who have supported me and stuck by me since I arrived here," said Wall, the No. 1 pick in the 2010 draft.

Chris Paul of the Los Angeles Clippers, Tony Parker of the San Antonio Spurs and Dirk Nowitzki of the Dallas Mavericks rounded out the West reserves.

Nowitzki earned his 12th selection, tying him for sixth all-time with nine players.

"I have been a part of All-Star weekend every year since I have been in the league and not being there last year felt strange," Nowitzki said in a statement. "The Dallas fan base has always been great to me and the Mavericks' organization and the city deserves to be represented at the All-Star Game."

The West coaches went for veterans with their choices at guard in Paul, last year's All-Star Game MVP, and the Spurs' Parker. That left first-time hopefuls Goran Dragic of Phoenix and Mike Conley Jr. of Memphis home.

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