NBA: Rising Stars Game adopts US versus World format

NBA: Rising Stars Game adopts US versus World format
Kelly Olynyk (#41) of the Boston Celtics takes a shot over Nikola Mirotic (#44) of the Chicago Bulls during the third quarter at TD Garden on January 16, 2015 in Boston, Massachusetts.

NEW YORK - Croatian rookie Bojan Bogdanovic and Canada's Kelly Olynyk are among the likely global teammates in the NBA Rising Stars Challenge under its new USA versus the World format announced Wednesday.

The NBA will send top US first- and second-year players against counterparts from other nations in the 21st edition of the select matchup of young talent on Feb 13 at Brooklyn on the eve of next month's NBA All-Star Game at New York's Madison Square Garden.

NBA assistant coaches will select a roster of 10 US players and 10 international players for the game, with each roster to include four guards, four forwards and two others from either area. Each team will have a minimum of three rookies and three second-year NBA players on the roster.

Each team will be guided by an assistant coach from the NBA All-Star Game staff. Coaches for the East and West squads in that game will come from the team with the best record in each conference as of Feb 1.

A record 101 international players from 37 nations began the season on NBA rosters last October. Canada has six players eligible for the Rising Stars Game, half of a record 12 Canadians in the league this season. Australia has four eligible players, half its total of eight NBA players.

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