Who Should of Been Named An All-Star Reserve
Last week, TNT revealed the starters for the 2016-2017 NBA All-Star game. There were some disappointments for obvious reasons. But quite frankly, it happens almost every year. I guess I can understand why some would vote for Steph Curry over Russell Westbrook. Curry is the more popular player. Chef Curry shoots long 3-pointers, with a pretty release and when it goes in, it looks awesome. He’s on a great team, with a better record. It just doesn’t justify the season that Russell Westbrook’s been having. Russ is averaging a triple-double on the season. He’s averaging 30 points per game. THIRTY! Anyhow, enough whining. Let’s break down who SHOULD be named the All-Star reserves.
Who should be named All-Star Reserves for the 2016-2017 NBA All-Star Game: West
DeMarcus Cousins always stuffs the stat-sheet, but his team isn’t always winning. Some would argue he’s not a great locker room guy, or he’s not worthy of being a “franchise star”. I would disagree as there’s no denying he’s a great talent. DMC wants to win, and I can respect a guy who plays his heart out every game. Make no mistake, he’s worthy of an All-Star nod.
Draymond Green is a perfect definition of a great teammate. Green is a teammate who does not care about statistics, only winning. He’s the heart and soul of the Warriors and is the type of teammate you want on your team because he will never back down from anyone and do whatever is necessary to win.
Arguable the biggest snub in NBA history, Russ-Mania is a no brainer in New Orleans.
Big Spain really gets no love, as the public forgets the big men in the NBA. He’s having a fantastic season and kept the Grizzlies in the playoff hunt despite his team being hammered by injuries.
This will be the first All-Star selection for Mr. Hayward, and with good reason. He’s having a career year with career highs in points (21.8) and rebounds (5.7) while limiting his turnovers and improving his 3-point shooting to nearly 40 percent. He has lead his Utah Jazz squad to a solid 29-18 start. His teammate Rudy Gobert deserves some love, but Captain America is the main reason to the Jazz’s success.
Dame Lillard was one of the big snubs last year until he was placed in the All-Star game for the injured Blake Griffin. Although the TrailBlazers are really struggling to rack up wins, Dame has backed it up with stellar production. TrailBlazers are only trailing the Denver Nuggets for the 8th seed by 1 game.
KAT is my pick to be the final selection as he deserves a nod replacing the injured Chris Paul. Yes, CP3 was having another great season before he went down with his thumb injury. The Timberwolves isn’t having the breakout season many expected, but Karl-Anthony Towns is better than he was last year, and his superb play deserves him a spot in the main event.
Honorable Mentions: Rudy Gobert, Utah Jazz CJ McCollum, Portland Trail Blazers Mike Conley, Memphis Grizzlies LaMarcus Aldridge, San Antonio Spurs Klay Thompson, Golden State Warriors DeAndre Jordan, Los Angeles Clippers
Who should be named All-Star Reserves for the 2016-2017 NBA All-Star Game: East
John Wall has been incredible this year, as the Wizards are currently 25-20. The early struggles have been forgotten as the Wizards have won 19 of their last 28 games dating back to December. Wall has been a huge part obviously and he’s the 3rd player not named Russell Westbrook and James Harden to average 23 points and 10 assists per game.
I highlighted Lowry last week as he should’ve been named the starter over his teammate DeRozan. The Raptors will go as far as Lowry takes them.
IT has seriously been balling in 2017. Thomas averaged a blistering 33.3 PPG since we turned in the New Year and he’s showing no signs of slowing down, despite whom the opponent is. Most impressive part is he’s doing his damage shooting 50% from the field and 95% from the line. Sheesh.
Kemba Walker will make his first All-Star team because he has really elevated his play this year. He’s finally consistent enough to be worthy of an All-Star and his team’s record shows for it. The Hornets are currently 6th seed in the Eastern Conference playoff race and should make a postseason appearance.
Trust. The. Process. As basketball fans, we knew Joel Embiid was going to be good. But nowhere did we expect this sort of breakout from a young player in his first official season of the NBA. Embiid has been the most impressive rookie by far and even though he has only appeared in 30 games this year, he has dominated the floor in impressive fashion. He’s got Philly nation excited again with not only his play, but his charisma. Don’t look now, the Philadelphia 76ers are 17-27. They probably won’t make the playoffs, but the Sixers are going to be a dangerous team and fun to watch for years to come especially with Ben Simmons nearing a return.
The Cavaliers know who Kevin Love is, and that’s exactly why they refuse to trade him for Carmelo Anthony. Kevin Love is a great player who is still in his prime. There’s not too many players in the NBA who can rebound the ball with ferocity and space out to the 3-point line to get you 20+ points. He’s the perfect fit to LeBron and his numbers show.
PG13’s Pacers has been disappointing to say the least. I was one of the few who thought they could challenge the Cavaliers this year for the top seed. Still, Paul George shows no ill effects from his horrific leg injury 2 years ago, and he’s still the man in Indiana.
Honorable Mentions: Avery Bradley, Boston Celtics Paul Millsap, Atlanta Hawks Bradley Beal, Washington Wizards Jabari Parker, Milwaukee Bucks Carmelo Anthony, New York Knicks Dwyane Wade, Chicago Bulls
Who do you think should be in New Orleans? Let us know what you think by tweeting us @otgbasketball!