Harden to Replace Evans on All-Star Sophomore Team

Thursday, May 26th 2011, 12:12 pm
By: News On 6

Originally Published: Feb 17, 2011 1:13 PM CDT

More All-Star Coverage from Oklahoma Sports:
All-Star Weekend 2011: Slam Dunk Preview
All-Star Weekend 2011: 3-Point Contest Preview
All-Star Weekend 2011: Rookie-Sophomore Challenge
Westbrook to Take Part in All-Star Skills Challenge
Layna Dewell
Oklahoma Sports Staff Writer

LOS ANGELES—Oklahoma City Thunder guard James Harden will replace the injured Tyreke Evans on the sophomore team for the Rookie Challenge game Friday.

Evans, a six-foot-six inch point guard for the Sacramento Kings is not able to play due to plantar fasciitis in his left foot.

Harden was named Evans’ replacement since he received the next highest number of votes to the 18-man roster. The participants in the T-Mobile Rookie Challenge & Youth Jam were selected by the NBA's assistant coaches, with each team submitting one ballot.

In last year’s rookie game, Harden came off the bench to score 22 points and so far this season he is averaging 10.3 points per contest, three rebounds and two assists for the Thunder.

Evans has dealt with the nagging plantar fasciitis most of the season and did not play Tuesday against OKC or Wednesday against Dallas. He has missed a total of seven games this season, but is still averaging 18.3 points per game, 5.5 assists while grabbing 4.9 rebounds. Evans was the Rookie Challenge MVP last season which ended a seven-year reign by the sophomores.

Harden is one of four Thunder players participating in the All-Star Weekend festivities.

Kevin Durant is on the All-Star team as well as in the 3-point competition while Russell Westbrook is also made the All-Star roster and Serge Ibaka joins Harden on the rookie squad as well as in the dunk competition.

The All-Star Rookie Challenge will tip off Friday at 8 p.m. CST on TNT.