NEW ORLEANS (AP) -- The NBA has decided to hold the 2017 All-Star Game in New Orleans, the league announced on Friday.
New Orleans replaces Charlotte, which was set to host the game until the NBA decided last month that it wouldn't hold its marquee, mid-season event in North Carolina because of a state law that limits anti-discrimination protections for lesbian, gay and transgender people.
Unlike several other Southern states, Louisiana has not been swept up in legislative efforts to pass laws similar to that in North Carolina -- a fact Gov. John Bel Edwards has touted while lobbying the NBA to bring its All-Star weekend to New Orleans for a third time.
"We embrace our rich cultural heritage and see our diversity as a virtue," Edwards wrote in a letter to NBA Commissioner Adam Silver in late July. "Should the NBA choose to bring the All-Star Game back to New Orleans in 2017, it will strongly reaffirm its commitment to communities that value fairness and inclusion."
This marks the third time New Orleans, which became an NBA city for the second time in 2002, has been selected to host the league's All-Star Game since 2008, less than three years after Hurricane Katrina struck. All-Star weekend also came to the Big Easy in 2014, when New Orleans Pelicans forward and center Anthony Davis made his All-Star debut. Davis would play the All-Star Game in his home arena again if he is named to the Western Conference squad for a fourth straight season.
Full story at FoxSports.com.