NEW ORLEANS ( – Rockets guard James Harden will start in place of the injured Kobe Bryant for Sunday’s NBA All-Star game, according to Yahoo Sports.

Harden will start along with former OKC teammate Kevin Durant, Golden State’s Stephen Curry,  Timberwolves forward Kevin Love and Clippers forward Blake Griffin.

The former Artesia High School player will start for the first time in an All-Star game in his five-year career in the NBA

Kobe had enough votes to start, but with a knee injury he sustained on Dec. 17, he will miss his first All-Star game since 2010.

Harden is averaging 23.9 points, 5.3 assists and 4.7 rebounds for the Rockets.

Below is a game from Kobe Bryant and James Harden competing in the Drew League in 2011. Kobe hit the game-winner with 45 points. Harden scored 44.

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