According to a report from Yahoo Sports, Mayor Rahm Emanuel and NBA commissioner Adam Silver are set to announce later this afternoon that Chicago will host the NBA All-Star Game in 2020. The exhibition game is held each February, selecting 24 players from the league's Eastern and Western Conferences for an offense-oriented, high-scoring match-up that typically involves plenty of showboating slam dunks.
The All-Star Game will be the culmination of the NBA's increased presence in Chicago in coming years. The league recently announced that it will host the 2018 NBA Draft Lottery in Chicago, following the lead of recent NFL and NHL drafts that were hosted in the city.
The decision to host the game at the United Center signals a marked change in the stance of Chicago Bulls president Michael Reinsdorf, who told the Chicago Tribune in 2012, "They would have to force me to take the All-Star Game." Reinsdorf has expressed reservations about the way in which the All-Star Game ticketing process functions, forcing season-ticket holders to enter a lottery for the chance to attend the game.
Chicago last hosted the NBA All-Star Game in 1988, with a lineup of players that featured basketball greats such as Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Patrick Ewing, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and the game's MVP, Michael Jordan. Here's hoping that some of the Bulls' newest players have achieved All-Star status by the time 2020 rolls around.