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Former Grizzlies star and fan favorite Mike Conley makes his first NBA All-Star Game

Conley, now a standout with the Utah Jazz, was named to the roster Friday night.
Credit: AP
Utah Jazz guard Mike Conley brings the ball up court in the second half during an NBA basketball game against the Golden State Warriors Saturday, Jan. 23, 2021, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

MEMPHIS, Tennessee — It’s fairly uncommon for an NBA player to play his entire career with the same team. So it is with Mike Conley.

Conley, a star guard for the Memphis Grizzlies for the first 12 years of his stellar career before being traded to the Utah Jazz, was named to the NBA All-Star Game Friday night as a roster replacement for the injured Suns star Devin Booker.

This is Conley’s first All-Star appearance in his 14-year career, making him the first player in NBA history to make his first appearance this late in his career.

Conley is averaging 16.1 points and 5.7 assists for the first-placed Jazz.

Here's what the Jazz said in their announcement:

It was announced today that Utah Jazz guard Mike Conley was named an All-Star by NBA Commissioner Adam Silver to replace injured Phoenix Suns guard Devin Booker in the 2021 NBA All-Star Game for the 70th NBA All-Star Game, which will be played at State Farm Arena in Atlanta on Sunday, March 7. This marks the first All-Star selection for Conley.

In addition, Conley will replace Booker in the 2021 MTN DEW 3-Point Contest, which will be held on March 7 before the NBA All-Star Game.    

Conley (6-1, 180, Ohio State) is in his 14th NBA season (2nd with Utah), averaging 16.1 points on 44.4 percent from the field, 42.2 percent from three (career-high), along with 5.7 assists, 3.5 rebounds (tied career-high) and 1.4 steals in 29.4 minutes per contest. He’s also knocking down a career-best 2.8 three-point field goals per game, helping Utah to an NBA-best 27-9 record this season. When Conley is on the floor in 2020-21, he is +277, which is the second-best plus/minus in the NBA only behind his teammate and fellow 2021 All-Star Rudy Gobert (+319).

In 14 seasons, Conley has totaled 12,874 points, 4,881 assists, 2,579 rebounds and 1,239 steals. He is one of only eight active NBA players to have garnered over 12,500 points, 4,500 assists, 2,500 rebounds and 1,200 steals and the only player among that group to have never been previously selected as an All-Star (Westbrook – WAS, Paul – PHX, Lowry – TOR, James – LAL, Iguodala – MIA, Harden – BKN and Curry – GSW).

The 33-year-old has previously earned All-NBA Defensive Second Team honors (2013), was three-times selected by his peers for the NBA Sportsmanship Award (2014, 2016 and 2019) and was also Named the Twyman-Stokes Teammate of the Year following the 2018-19 season.

He joins two Utah teammates, Team LeBron center Rudy Gobert and Team Durant guard Donovan Mitchell, in the NBA All-Star Game. This marks the first time since 1989 that three Jazz players have been selected to an All-Star game.