Leave it to the NBA to botch its All-Star voting process. Some new rule where player voting matters has left a guy averaging a triple-double out of the starting lineup. Seriously, how do the players in the league not vote for Russell Westbrook? He’s not the one who left his team to join a 73-win team. He is the one that signed a 3-year extension with a team where he’s really the only true option; but yet players seem to hate Westbrook for whatever reason. Stephen Curry is All-Star worthy, sure, but he has spent all season either adjusting to KD’s arrival or trying to duplicate his back-to-back MVP success (probably the latter). Having him start over Westbrook is a crime, and just proves the All-Star voting system is a big joke.
I think it’s time we end the madness and adopt some new ways to pick the All-Star game. I propose that the NBA adopt MLB’s ‘every team must be represented’ rule. The math on that is simple you have 15 spot and 15 teams in each conference it’s too perfect. Just think how interesting picking the sides becomes. For instance, would the Warriors’ All-Star be Durant, Curry or Thompson? Tthat’s a tough call. The coaches with the best records as of Feb. 1 would get the opportunity over a week or so to pick the 15 players for their rosters. This season it’s Tyronn Lue and Steve Kerr. With the loaded roster each of them possess, imagine the intrigue on having to pick one of your guys over the others. That adds to the drama of it all. It could be televised. They televise the draft lottery and Al- Star selections, with my forma,t would be must-see in my eyes. The biggest questions with this would be, do you just go the 15 best players or do you construct a roster? With nothing riding on the game, I’d just go the best 15 and watch it play out over 48 minutes. This also helps reduce the chances of injury with a deeper bench. With all teams being represented, it gives some player in Atlanta or Denver a shot at MVP honors; I can’t remember the last time that happened.
I can’t make this outlandish proposal without giving you who would be my All-Star 15 from each team and I’ll let you know, it’s not as easy as it sounds due to everyone trying to team up to bring home a championship. Who knows maybe some players would start valuing All-Star chances over titles. I’m kidding, but, want to join a superteam? Enjoy missing the big game from All-Star weekend. You’d better hope you can dunk or shoot threes.
Eastern Conference All Stars:
Atlanta Hawks:PF Paul Millsap
He’s not flashy or a household name but he gets it done. Just like my assessment of Millsap it wasn’t flashy but got the job done.
Boston Celtics: PG Isaiah Thomas
Having the best season of his career thus far. Having Al Horford around has really helped. The 5’9 point gaurd is leading the Celtics to there best season since the Paul Pirece Era.
Brooklyn Nets: C Brook Lopez
The Nets are the Philadelphia Phillies of this exercise. We only invite you because we have to. So why not grab the big man? Even if he’s an awful rebounder at 7 feet tall and I do mean awful for his size.
Charlotte Hornets: PG Kemba Walker
I almost went Cody Zeller here. Just kidding, it’s obviously Kemba. He’s probably the most popular Hornet since Larry Johnson and Muggsy Bogues. It doesn’t hurt that he’s good. Wlaker is putting up career numbers and is becoming one of the best back court players in the game.
Chicago Bulls: SF Jimmy Butler
I could have gone Dwyane Wade here because he’s at the end of his career and you have to honor the greats of the game, but that can wait till next season. Butler wanted to be the man in Chi-town and he is. Plus it’s not everyday you get an All Star who enjoys shit talking his teammates publicly.
Cleveland Cavaliers: SF LeBron James
What does Tyrone Lue do? Kyrie Irving, under the old system, is an All-Star but for this you have to take the most popular player in the game. Do you think this Eastern squad is enough player makers for the King? Probably not he’s still gonna bitch isn’t he.
*Side Note: The Chicago Cubs are World Champs baby!!
Detroit Pistons: C Andre Drummond
Sure, Tobias Harris and Reggie Jackson are leading the team in scoring, but Drummond is this teams backbone, averaging a double-double. Now if only he could get his free throw shooting to even be slightly below average. Drummond needs to work of his Free throws the way Donald Trump needs to work on not being so Twitter happy….Like I’m one to talk.
*Side note spent a lot.of time trying to find Drummond at a Tigers game. Apparently he is too good for the Tigers.
Indiana Pacers: SF Paul George
Again, clearly the best player on the Pacers, even with Jeff Teague having a nice season after coming over from Atlanta. George is a household name and NBA 2K17 cover athlete. With the whispers of him leaving Nap-town, don’t be shocked if it becomes Myles Turner’s All-Star spot in the future.
Miami Heat: PG Goran Dragic
Here’s where if I’m Tyron Lue I make the strategy move and take Dragic over Hassan Whiteside. I’m already fairly deep in the frontcourt and with all the guards the West is bringing to the table, I need someone who can keep up with them. Whiteside is flashier, but Dragic helps me win the game, even if it doesn’t ultimately matter. Plus the likelihood of Whiteside doing something stupid in New Orleans is high.
Milwaukee Bucks: SF Giannis Antetokounmpo
The Greek Freak is a stud and he’s only 22. As long he’s with the Bucks he will always be their representative for the All-Star game. Plus, being able to guard all five positions is a big help.
New York Knicks: PF Carmelo Anthony
This spot should be Kristaps Porzingis’ spot. He’s slowly becoming the face of the Knicks as Melo and the front office are seemingly at odds with one another. You’d have to think in this spot to keep Melo happy, Lue would pick him in an effort to maybe work out a trade later down the road? Sure it’s just an All Star game but snubbing Melo could hurt the Cavs in the bigger picture.
Orlando Magic: SG Evan Fournier
Not exactly much to choose from in Orlando. Aaron Gordon was supposed to take that next step this season but hasn’t. So hopefully he enjoys that dunk contest for another season. I’ll take Fournier and his scoring ability here. Just whatever you do, DO NOT Google his last name. You have been Warned.
Philadelphia 76ers: C Joel Embiid
Who else would it be? Not only was Embiid worth the wait, he’s funny as hell too. Plus, I can’t remember the last time the Sixers had an All-Star. Who better than Embiid to break the strea? Not to mention an All Star bid whould almost certainly help his DM game, where it all goes down.
Toronto Raptors: SG DeMar DeRozen
DeRozen can score from anywhere on the floor and has slowly built himself into one of the more underrated superstars in the NBA. If he played in a bigger market, we would never shut up about him but you know, Canada.
Washington Wizards: PG John Wall
Averaging a double-double and leading the Wizards to a current 5th seed in the East. Wall might just be the fastest player in the NBA. You take Wall over Beal in this spot so Lue wouldn’t have to rely so heavily on Dragic. Plus it’s John Wall look at that Swag.
Now on to the Western Conference All Stars:
Dallas Mavericks: SF Harrison Barnes
He’s the best player on a bad team, so I think Kerr goes with Barnes especially given their Golden State connection. Not to mention had Barnes stayed in the Bay Area he would never make an Star game. Interesting thought, I could see Cuban paying off Barnes to defer the spot to Dirk given their bromance.
Denver Nuggets: Nikola Jokic
I know what you are saying “Oh that’s what he looks like.” Almost went Gallinari here but Jokic is having a better overall season for the surprisingly decent Nuggets, who are currently in the playoffs. Nuggets fans should expect him to play on this West roster.
Golden State Warriors: SF Kevin Durant
This is were this MLB idea gets interesting. You have Kerr coaching and picking the team. Kerr has to choose between the two-time MVP who won him a title, or his hot new All-Star who is the second-best player in the NBA. Of course you go with Durant. he hasn’t missed a step ànd has became even more efficient in Kerr’s Offense. Tell you wouldn’t tune into an All Star Selection show and watch Kerr sweat out this decision.
Houston Rockets: PG James Harden
The Beard is having one of his best seasons of his career. Harden has not only improved offensively but he’s making everyone around him better while leading the lead in assists. It wouldn’t be an All-Star game without Harden. He may be the first athlete to survive the Kardashian Kurse, because obviously you spell it with a K in this situation.
Los Angeles Clippers: C DeAndre Jordan
Sure he’s the team’s 6th-leading scorer, but he dominates the glass and the paint. His 13-plus rebounds a game is stellar. He’s been the most consistent Clipper this season and this All-Star nod is well deserved. Plus those alley oops will look filthy.
Los Angeles Lakers: PG Lou Williams
The Lakers are full of young potential but it’s the veteran Williams who has been the best player on the bad team, so he gets the Lakers’ spot. Lucky for the Lakers under this format they even get a player. Side note, this would be the first non-Kobe All-Star for the team since forever.
Memphis Grizzlies: PG Mike Conley Jr.
Can I pick an All-Star based on a contract? Sure I can, it’s my fantasy. Conley is the highest-paid player in the NBA. Sure, Marc Gasol is overall the best player on the team but in this game quick players matter with all the star power on the floor.
Minnesota Timberwolves: C Karl-Anthony Towns
One of the best young players in the game, if not the best. Should have been an All-Star already, but under the old format it’s hard to break though. The T-Wolves are a team on the rise in my eyes and it starts with Towns. Should be an All-Star for years to come just like former Wolves Great Kevin Garnett.
New Orleans Pelicans: C Anthony Davis
This is possibly the easiest player to pick for a team. Poor Davis has hardly anything around him and still puts up monster numbers. If there is ever a possession in which Davis doesn’t touch the ball, the coach should be fired on the spot. Hell, I’d throw him the ball while he is on the bench like Daffy Duck did in Space Jam.
Oklahoma City Thunder: PG Russell Westbrook
Should be starting in the actual game. He’s averaging a triple-double. Let me repeat that, A DAMN TRIPLE DOUBLE! Yes, he’s the best option on the Thunder after KD bailed for Golden State. If he can somehow continue this pace and make the playoffs, he will be winning more than my All-Star vote.
The young and exciting Booker is on the rise and regarded as one of the best young players in the game. His shooting touch would be awesome for the All-Star game.
Portland Trail Blazers: PG Damian Lillard
I’ll do something the NBA couldn’t this season and make Damian Lillard an All-Star. At the time of writing this, Lillard is averaging 26 a game and not to mention he is a very popular player throughput the league.
Sacramento Kings: C DeMarcus Cousins
Boogie, love him or hate him, is the marquee player on the Kings. He should be an All-Star every season, as he is hands down the best center in the league, but his basket case like tendencies rub a lot of people the wrong way. It’s time for him and Sac-town to part ways, so Boogie better be picky with his next team as this format only allows for one All-Star and you know Boogie loves his shine. As you can see Boogie isn’t pleased.
San Antonio Spurs: SF Kawhi Lenoard
With Duncan gone and Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker on the decline, this is now his team and he has filled the role perfectly, averaging 25 points a game. Just like his predecessor Duncan, Kawhi let’s his game do the talking for him, which is a nice change of pace in this look-at-me era of the NBA.
Utah Jazz: SF Gordan Hayward
For you casual basketball fans, if you haven’t noticed, the Utah Jazz are good! I know, crazy right? But check the standings. The baby-faced Hayward got paid big bucks and has been enjoying a career year. Proof that a beard and a hair cut can change a man(see below) but Heyward will always be the guy in the picture above to me.
Which side would you take in this format? Do you think I overlooked a player more deserving than the one I picked? Well, let us know!