The NBA basketball league has announced that Bankers Life Fieldhouse, home of the Indiana Pacers, will host its All-Star event in 2021.
The game, which will be the 70th edition of the event, will take place on February 14, 2021.
Indianapolis has staged the event once before, in 1985, but the 2021 edition will mark Bankers Life Fieldhouse’s first time as host. The Hoosier Dome hosted in 1985.
The arena opened in November 1999 and has a capacity of 18,000 for basketball.
“Indianapolis has an enduring love for basketball that creates a special connection to our All-Star Game,” NBA commissioner Adam Silver said.
“I want to especially thank Herb Simon (Pacers Sports & Entertainment owner) for his efforts to bring the All-Star festivities back to Indianapolis as well as acknowledge the strong support we received from Governor Holcomb, Mayor Hogsett, Larry Bird, Rick Fuson and the entire Pacers organisation.”
The hosting deal was brokered by Pacers Sports & Entertainment, Indiana Sports Corp. and Visit Indy.
Fuson will serve as the chairman of the local organising committee for the event. Mel Raines, PS&E’s senior vice-president for facilities operations, will be the organising committee’s president. Raines was vice-president of government relations and operations for Indianapolis’ staging of the 2012 Super Bowl NFL American football game.
On-court events during the 2021 NBA All-Star game will include top rookies and second-year players in the Rising Stars on February 12, followed the next day by the Taco Bell Skills Challenge, the JBL Three-Point Contest and the Verizon Slam Dunk during State Farm All-Star Saturday Night.
Lucas Oil Stadium and the Indiana Convention Center will also host events, including the NBA All-Star Celebrity Game and NBA All-Star and Rising Stars practices.
The 2018 All-Star game is due to be held at Los Angeles’ Staples Center, with the 2019 game to be held at Charlotte’s Spectrum Center. In 2020, the game heads to Chicago’s United Center.