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Trae Young, John Collins to represent Atlanta Hawks in NBA Rising Stars game

Representing Atlanta on Friday night in Charlotte.

NBA: Rising Stars Challenge-U.S. at World Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

One year ago, John Collins was selected as the lone representative for the Atlanta Hawks at NBA All-Star weekend, landing in the Rising Stars game during a successful rookie campaign. Eventually, Taurean Prince joined his teammate as an injury replacement but, in 2019, Collins will make a repeat appearance in the event and, this time around, he will be joined (from the beginning) on Team USA by Hawks rookie point guard Trae Young.

The NBA announced the rosters for this year’s event and it was no surprise to see both Collins and Young involved. In his second NBA season, Collins is averaging 19.5 points (on 60 percent shooting) and 10.0 rebounds per game, acting as Atlanta’s best (and most productive) player since returning from an early-season injury. His inclusion was essentially a no-brainer given the numbers that Collins has been able to post and it will be intriguing to see how he performs in a setting that is conducive to his talents.

As for Young, the first-year guard from Oklahoma (who is also participating in the Skills Challenge) has performed well during his first NBA action, averaging 16.4 points and 7.3 assists (a top-10 figure in the NBA) per game. While he isn’t quite on the level of Collins in terms of present-day effectiveness and consistency, Young has flashed a great deal of potential and, as a 20-year-old captaining an NBA offense as its engine, it is very easy to be encouraged by his early progress.

The Hawks did have another contender for inclusion in the festivities, as rookie swingman Kevin Huerter would theoretically be in the mix for the honor. At this juncture, though, Huerter didn’t quite make the cut despite solid two-way play and 37.5 percent shooting from three-point distance. There is the possibility, however, that the former Maryland standout could be in line for an invite in the event of injury or other circumstances for one of the already invited players.

Here are the full rosters for both squads:

Team USA

  • Jarrett Allen
  • Marvin Bagley
  • Lonzo Ball
  • John Collins
  • De’Aaron Fox
  • Jaren Jackson Jr.
  • Kyle Kuzma
  • Donovan Mitchell
  • Jayson Tatum
  • Trae Young

Team World

  • OG Anunoby
  • Deandre Ayton
  • Bogdan Bogdanovic
  • Luka Doncic
  • Shai Gilgeous-Alexander
  • Rodions Kurucs
  • Lauri Markkanen
  • Josh Okogie
  • Cedi Osman
  • Ben Simmons

Stay tuned.