Paul George admits he is not a fan of the NBA All-Star Game going ahead this year, despite being selected to represent the Western Conference.
George is averaging 24.6 points and shooting an impressive 48.6 per cent from three-point range this season for the Los Angeles Clippers, a team that boasts a 23-10 record after Tuesday's win over the Washington Wizards.
His efforts have been rewarded with a place among the list of reserves for the West for the game in Atlanta on March 7.
It will be a seventh All-Star appearance for George, yet he feels that – amid the coronavirus pandemic – the league should have considered skipping the contest in 2021, insisting: "It's not something that needs to be had".
"I'm not a fan of it, and that's just for personal reasons," George said.
"I'm just not a fan of it with everything going on, I think it's just smart [not to happen]. I get that we have an amazing league, I'm not discrediting that. But I think, in the middle of a pandemic, it's not something that needs to be had.
"I got fined for spending time with a team-mate, for having a team-mate over, then we're having this All-Star Game.
"I've got personal reasons why I disagree with the game, but I've been selected, and I'll be there to play for the fans."
George missed out on selection for last year's All-Star lineups, while his first season with the Clippers finished in disappointing fashion, the team letting slip a 3-1 series lead to lose to the Denver Nuggets in the Western Conference semi-finals.
For the 30-year-old, however, such setbacks just fuel his desire to become even better.
"It's just more so, me just staying grounded, me staying committed just to the process. With all the noise, everything going on, you find motivation through it," he said, referencing the reaction to the Clippers' postseason collapse in the Orlando bubble.
"You dig deep and you would be amazed on what comes out of it. It was honestly just using everything as motivation and fuel and all of that towards this year.
"It's a good milestone to start how my season is going, but definitely not where I want it to end. Got a lot more work to do."