Zach LaVine sits fifth for East backcourt in first All-Star voting returns

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Zach LaVine has made no secret of his desire to land in his first NBA All-Star game, which just conveniently happens to be taking place Feb. 16 at his building of employment in the United Center.

And beyond his strong statistics of 23.4 points, 4.6 rebounds and 3.9 assists, LaVine fared fairly well in first returns of fan voting released by the league Thursday. LaVine's 174,991 votes place him fifth among Eastern Conference guards behind the Hawks' Trae Young, the Nets' Kyrie Irving, the Celtics' Kemba Walker and the Pistons' Derrick Rose:

Fan voting accounts for 50 percent of the equation to select starters. Voting from players and media account for 25 percent each.

Coaches vote for All-Star reserves. If Irving lands a starting spot and can't play due to the shoulder injury that has sidelined him for much of this season, a reserve would slide into his starting role and NBA commissioner Adam Silver would name an injury replacement. LaVine could also draw consideration from the hometown bump in that regard.

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