Next weekend, the NBA will take a collective break from the regular season for All-Star Weekend. The Utah Jazz may have quite a few representatives at different events. Lauri Markkanen has been selected to the All-Star team, Mike Conley has been invited to the Skills Challenge, and rumors say the Jazz may have one or two representatives in the Three-Point Contest. In addition, Walker Kessler has been selected for the Rising Stars game, a showcase for rookies and second-year players in the NBA. This year, the league has chosen to update the format, including G-League players and separating into four teams. Each team has a former NBA star as an honorary coach. Among those coaches are Jazz alumni Deron Williams and current Jazz assistant coach Jason Terry.
The coaches held a televised draft of the players today, and Walker Kessler was selected to team Deron. The full rosters and format of the Rising Stars event can be found here.
Despite a sour ending to Williams' Jazz career, the former star and the franchise have made amends, and Williams has been involved with the Jazz multiple times this year.
Kessler was one of the few rookies selected for the roster. His emergence has been one of Utah's most significant stories of the season. He's claimed the starting center role and, as a starter, is averaging nearly a double-double with 9.7 points and 10.7 rebounds, along with 2.4 blocks per game. Kessler is looking like a long-term building block for the Jazz.