Yesterday the NBA released which players would be the reserves for the All-Star game. These players were picked and voted for by NBA coaches.
Eastern Conference starters: Rajon Rondo (Celtics), Dwyane Wade (Heat), LeBron James (Heat), Carmelo Anthony (Knicks), Kevin Garnett (Celtics)
Eastern Conference reserves: Chris Bosh (Heat), Tyson Chandler (Knicks), Luol Deng (Bulls), Paul George (Pacers), Jrue Holiday (Sixers), Kyrie Irving (Cavaliers), Joakim Noah (Bulls)
Western Conference starters: Chris Paul (Clippers), Kobe Bryant (Lakers), Kevin Durant (Thunder), Blake Griffin (Clippers), Dwight Howard (Lakers)
Western Conference reserves: LaMarcus Aldridge (Blazers), Tim Duncan (Spurs), James Harden (Rockets), David Lee (Warriors), Tony Parker (Spurs), Zach Randolph (Grizzlies), Russell Westbrook (Thunder)
The starters, on the other hand, are elected by fan vote, which always turns the voting process into a popularity contest. This then causes there to be a few players that were snubbed of what seemed like a more than deserving all-star appearance.
Here are a few worthy mentions:
Stephen Curry - 20.9ppg (9th in NBA) 4.1rpg 6.6 ast 1.7stls – Golden State finds themselves in a very unfamiliar position as they have already surpassed their win total from last season, and are currently sitting at 5th in the Western Conference.
This is in large part due to the stellar play of their young guard Stephen Curry. Curry has been playing like a man possessed, shooting 45% from beyond the 3 point line (3rd in the NBA).The 24-year old leads his team in points, assists and steals.
There’s no doubt that the Warriors have found their franchise player, and if it weren’t for the superbly talented guards in the Western Conference (Paul, Bryant, Harden, Westbrook, Parker) he surely would have found a spot on the roster.
Serge Ibaka - 14.0ppg 8.3 rbg 2.8 blkpg (2nd in NBA) – Ibaka has vastly improved his offensive game, developing a mid range jump shot that he is hitting with efficiency.
Not only is he shooting a career best 56% from the field this season (5th in the NBA), but he is also shooting well from the charity stripe, hitting 75.7% of his free throws which is also a career best.
Ibaka has without a doubt improved his game by leaps and bounds since his rookie season.
Brook Lopez - 18.6 ppg 7.4 rpg 2.1 blkpg – Nets nation blew up Twitter yesterday after the news had broke out that the NBA’s best scoring center would not be participating in the All-Star game.
Lopez has more blocks and points per game than any center on the east squad, and his consistent play has the Nets in 3rd in the Eastern conference and only a game behind their crosstown rival Knicks. Lopez unfortunately fell victim to the popularity contest that we call the All-Star game.
His numbers exceed that of starter Kevin Garnett’s in about every offensive category but fell short in the one category that matters in making the all-star game, fan votes. Garnett received 553,222 votes where as Lopez only received 108,978 votes.
To put things into perspective, players such as Andrew Bynum (hasn’t played one game all season), Ama’re Stoudemire (played in 9 games), and even Shane Battier all received more votes than Lopez. This voting process has and always will be flawed unless changed.
Don’t get me wrong I love that the fans can take part in picking who they want to see but it almost never produces the best and most fair results. But lesson learned Nets nation, if you want your stars in the game get out and vote!
Mike Block | Elite.