|(NBA) Russian Shved picked in Rising Stars Challenge
Russian guard Alexey Shved, an NBA rookie guard with the Minnesota Timberwolves, was the only player from outside the United States named on Wednesday to the NBA Rising Stars Challenge.
Shved, who has missed the past five games for Minnesota with a sprained left ankle, has averaged 10.7 points, 4.6 assists and 2.5 rebounds a game in his first NBA season after an impressive showing for Russia at the London Olympics, AFP reports.
The former CSKA Moscow star scored 25 points against Argentina in last year's Olympic bronze-medal game to spark a Russian victory.
Shved will be among 18 players in their first or second NBA seasons in a talent pool to be divided into teams for the event on February 15, part of the festivities ahead of the NBA All-Star Game in Houston, Texas.
Cleveland's Kyrie Irving, last season's NBA Rookie of the Year, and NBA Draft top pick Anthony Davis of New Orleans are also in the pool of players that were chosen by NBA assistant coaches.
Retired NBA stars Shaquille O'Neal and Charles Barkley will select players from the talent pool and create teams to play in the game.
Last year, in the first time using the format, "Team Chuck'' beat "Team Shaq'' 146-133.