Faced with a growing talent gap between the Eastern and Western conferences, the NBA is eliminating the East-vs-West format for the 2018 All-Star Game in Los Angeles.
Top vote-getters in each conference will be named captains and select teams “without regard for conference affiliation.”
#NBAAllStar captains to draft from pool of players voted as starters & reserves
— 2018 NBA All-Star (@NBAAllStar) October 3, 2017
Per NBA press release:
The National Basketball Association (NBA) and National Basketball Players Association (NBPA) announced today a new All-Star Game format for NBA All-Star 2018 in Los Angeles. This will mark the NBA’s first All-Star Game without a matchup between the Eastern Conference and the Western Conference.
Under the revamped format, two captains will draft the 2018 All-Star teams from the pool of players voted as starters and reserves, making selections without regard for conference affiliation. The captains will be the All-Star starter from each conference who receives the most fan votes in his conference. […]
The process for selecting the 24 All-Stars will remain the same, with 12 players from each conference earning spots. The 10 starters – two guards and three frontcourt players per conference – will continue to be chosen by a combination of fans (50 percent of the vote), current players (25 percent) and basketball media (25 percent).
The NBA’s head coaches will still select the 14 reserves, voting for two guards, three frontcourt players and two players at any position in their respective conferences.