TORONTO – About 750 million people around the globe are expected to follow Sunday's NBA All-Star Game, mostly to catch Kobe Bryant's final appearance in the league's midseason showcase.
Bryant, 37, was the leading vote-getter in the fan balloting. But he said he would be fine playing 10 minutes Sunday.
Oklahoma City's Kevin Durant isn't buying that one. "We definitely want to send him off on a good note," he said.
Bryant is a four-time All-Star MVP, tying him with Bob Petit for the league record. If he isn't outscored by LeBron James, he will end his career as the leading scorer in All-Star Game history.
Commissioner Adam Silver said the strategy of intentionally fouling poor shooters away from the ball has increased this season, which has caused him to rethink his stance on adjusting the rules.
"It's my job right now to at least formulate an alternative together with the competition committee to ultimately bring to our board of governors," Silver said during his annual All-Star news conference.
Sager, suits are back
Craig Sager, the TNT sideline reporter known for wearing flashy suits, is back for All-Star weekend this year. He had been receiving treatment for leukemia that he has been battling for the past few years, which included a blood transfusion.
Once he arrived in Canada, he was easy to spot.
"I just saw him," Spurs coach and longtime foil Gregg Popovich said after the Western Conference team practiced Saturday. "His suit spoke to me. It blinded me for a second."
Sager, a longtime fixture at NBA games, has needed two bone marrow transplants and still has to make treks to Houston once a month. He has returned to the sideline for games this season, and was scheduled to do both the Saturday night activities that include the three-point shootout and the dunk contest as well as the game on Sunday.
• Carmelo Anthony says he's "not going nowhere," in expressing his anger about a New York Daily News report linking him to trade talks involving Cleveland.
• All-Star forward Chris Bosh said he will have further exams on his strained right calf when he returns to Miami. Bosh will not play in Sunday's game. Atlanta's Al Horford will take his place.