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New York City to host 2015 All-Star Weekend

(Reuters) - Hosting duties for the National Basketball Association's 2015 All-Star Game will be shared between the New York Knicks and Brooklyn Nets, the league said on Wednesday.

The newly renovated Madison Square Garden, home to the Knicks, will host the midseason exhibition on February 15 while the $1 billion Barclays Center, which opened a year ago and is home to the Nets, will showcase the popular slam dunk contest and the weekend's other events.

The announcement was made during a during a news conference that included NBA Commissioner David Stern, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and officials from each hosting arena.

"New York offers an extraordinary opportunity to host NBA All-Star events at two world-class venues," said Stern. "We look forward to celebrating our game with basketball fans across the entire city, in all five boroughs."

This marks the fifth time that the NBA All-Star Game will be played in New York and the first time since 1998.

Landing an NBA All-Star Weekend, essentially a showcase of skills competitions and exhibitions culminating in a game which pits top players from the NBA's two conferences against each other, offers big business benefits to the host city.

The 2013 event was held in Houston, which estimated a direct economic impact of $60 million, and an overall economic impact of slightly below $100 million.

The 2014 All-Star Game is set for New Orleans.

(Reporting by Frank Pingue in Toronto)

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