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Rising Stars Challenge: Kyrie Irving, Tristan Thompson In Pool Before Draft

For more on the Cleveland Cavaliers, go to Fear The Sword.

With All-Star weekend coming up and all of the festivities to come with, the first thing of note is the Rising Stars Challenge draft. That's set for Thursday at 7:00 p.m., when Shaq and Charles Barkley will take over as general managers of the two teams and draft from a pool of 18 rookies and sophomores.

Previously, it had been called the Rookie Challenge, where the best rookies competed against the best second-year players, but this year it's going to be mixed teams. For the Cleveland Cavaliers, they've got both Kyrie Irving, and the more impressive Tristan Tompson in the pool of players. Irving has been phenomenal this season, leading all rookies in scoring, while Thompson has played well in limited minutes and could be in line for some more playing time.

They're joining names like Blake Griffin, John Wall, Ricky Rubio, Greg Monroe, DeMarcus Cousins and more. SB Nation's own Mike Prada and Andrew Sharp do battle (though Shaq and Barkley would crush them) in their own draft with the same pool, where you can also find a list of all the players involved.

For more on the Cleveland Cavaliers, go to Fear The Sword. You can also head over to SB Nation's main NBA hub at

Photographs by spatulated, Triple Tri, and chrischappelear used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.