The Pelicans rookie Nicolò Melli has been added as an injury replacement for the Rising Stars Game at NBA All-Star Weekend.
The Italy-Born will replace DeAndre Ayon (Bahamas) and will play for Team World. The former No. 1 overall pick suffered an ankle injury and won't be able to participate in the game.
The 29yo will be the oldest player in Friday's game, and will also be one of three New Orleans players to participate on it, next to Nickeil Alexander-Walker and Zion Williamson. Melli is averaging 6.1 points while shooting .373 from three-point range, ranking him 6th among rookies, 2.8 rebounds and 1.1 assists.
Nico, who spent 12 years overseas, joins Alexander-Walker, Williamson, Chris Paul, Anthony Davis and Buddy Hield as the only players in Pelicans history to be selected for the RSG.
The game will take place at the United Center on Friday, February 14 at 9:00 p.m. ET.