Brooklyn Nets guard D'Angelo Russell has been named as the replacement for Indiana Pacers guard Victor Oladipo for the Eastern Conference reserves for the 2019 NBA All-Star Game, the league announced on Friday.
Oladipo is out for the season after suffering a ruptured quad tendon in his right knee on Jan. 23.
It marks the first All-Star Game selection for the 2015 second overall pick, who is enjoying the best season of his young career. He is averaging career highs nearly across the board, including in scoring (19.6 points per game), shooting (43.8 percent), three-point shooting (37.4 percent) and assists (6.4).
He came on particularly strong in January, averaging 23.8 points and 7.3 assists per game last month. That included a career high-tying 40-piece against the Orlando Magic back on Jan. 18:
The 22-year-old's recent hot streak has caught the eye of Oklahoma City Thunder star Paul George, who was voted as a starter for the Western Conference. George took to Instagram earlier this week to tell Russell to "keep shining lil bro!"
Meanwhile, Russell has led Brooklyn to a 28-25 record, which is good for sixth in the Eastern Conference. With a 4.5-game lead on the ninth-place team, the Nets are currently in a solid position to end a three-year playoff drought.
Russell was not among the Eastern Conference reserves that were announced on Thursday night. However, with Oladipo unable to participate, Russell was among the leading candidates to fill in.
Russell now knows that he will be headed to Charlotte for the All-Star Game on Feb. 17. However, he will have to wait until the ASG draft on Feb. 7 to see if he will be a member of LeBron James' or Giannis Antetokounmpo's team.