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Around The NBA: All-Star Picks

 

The NBA All-Star starters were announced on Thursday night. No real surprises as reigning MVP Derrick Rose of the Bulls, Dwyane Wade and LeBron James of the Heat, Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony, and Magic center Dwight Howard were all named as the East five. They will be opposed by Chris Paul (Clippers), Kobe Bryant (Lakers), Kevin Durant (Thunder), Blake Griffin (Clippers) and Andrew Bynum (Lakers) from the Western Conference. The two sides will square off in Orlando at the end of this month.

The fans did a pretty solid job picking the starters this year. There wasn’t any popular injured guys (Yao Ming) or veteran fan-favorites who got in undeservingly (Allen Iverson). Carmelo isn’t having the best season and is on a disappointing Knicks team, but he’s still an All-Star. I’m not going to argue with any of the 10 selections. Every year there are arguments over those last 14 reserve spots. And this season is no different. Here are my picks, Western Conference first.

West Reserves:

Forward: Kevin Love, Timberwolves (25 points, 14 rebounds)
Forward: LaMarcus Aldridge, Trail Blazers (23-9)
Forward: Rudy Gay, Grizzlies (18-6.5)
Center: Marc Gasol, Grizzlies (14.5-10.5)
Guard: Russell Westbrook, Thunder (22-5-6)
Guard: Monta Ellis, Warriors (21.5-3-7)
Guard: Tony Parker, Spurs (17-8 assists)

Some of these are obvious (Love, Aldridge, Westbrook) but the others are all debatable. I believe Ellis is finally deserving this year, despite the Warriors still not being a Top 8 team in the West. Steve Nash and James Harden have great cases, but with the success of the Spurs I give Parker a slight edge. He is quietly having another great year. Hard to leave the Nuggets without a selection, but the truth is they are a very solid team, not relying on any one player to carry them. Nene, Gallinari, or even Lawson or Harrington could represent Denver. Tough choices.

East Reserves:

Forward: Chris Bosh, Heat (20-8)
Forward: Paul Pierce, Celtics (18-5.5-5.5)
Forward: Amare Stoudemire, Knicks (18-8)
Center: Roy Hibbert, Pacers (14-10)
Guard: Deron Williams, Nets (20.5-8.5)
Guard: Brandon Jennings, Bucks (20.5-3-6)
Guard: Joe Johnson, Hawks (19-4-4)

Toughest omissions included Rajon Rondo, Danny Granger, Josh Smith, Greg Monroe, Kyrie Irving, and Ryan Anderson. If Rondo has a great week (coming back from his wrist injury) he could crack the roster. I feel that Jennings is deserving this year. Hibbert likely gets in because of the lack of depth at center in the East. Al Horford and Andrew Bogut are hurt and the rest of the teams don’t even really have a center, so Hibbert’s 14-10 combined with being on a good Pacers team gets him the honor.

Let the debates begin.

Rich Keefe is the Celtics Reporter for 98.5 The Sports Hub.  He writes the “Around The NBA” and “5 Questions With…” columns on CelticsHub.com.  You can follow him on twitter: @Keefe21

  • -jp

    Joe Johnson is not an all star. Rondo, or even ray with his insane shooting to start the year deserve a spot over him. What about Igodala (spelling). The 76ers have been good. Let’s reward defense on the all star team.

  • skeeds

    I can't say that I disagree with most, I do prefer rewarding players for their contribution to their team's success rather than for great averages on lousy teams though.
    Deron might as well average 40 points and 15 assists. He does that while his team is 8-16. No matter how much it's his fault, I cannot appreciate his numbers when they have no impact on his team's success…
    By that factor, I would consider both Iguodala and Deng (if he's not injured) over Williams. Especially Iguadala, has long deserved to be chosen as an allstar, and now Philly's level of play makes his case very strong.
    I'd also pick Josh Smith over STAT. His 15-7-3-2 stat line for the 16-7 Hawks is more impressive than the 18-8 Stoudamire's averaging for the Knicks, who've lost something like 12 of their last 13 games.

    For the same reason, I'd leave Monta out of the west roster. I'd hate to do so, cause he's one of my favorite players and the kind of guy the allstar game was made for. At the same time though, there's Ty Lawson, having a breakout year, spearheading the best offense in the league and one of the most exciting teams to watch. And the Nuggets aren't just winning. They're 2nd in the West.

  • guest

    I don't care about who is a west reserve except for D'Andre Jordan. That man deserves a spot on there. He's been playing on an all-star level without having to be really an offensive player.

  • http://twitter.com/michaeljavid @michaeljavid

    Too many good guards out there. Can't we just bump out Hibbert and replace him with another guard? Both Iguodala and Rondo need heavy consideration, especially Iggy. Kyrie Irving will have his place as an all-star for years to come if he keeps improving, but not this year.

    As for Ty Lawson and Ryan Anderson, they can duke it out for Most Improved Player at the end of the season.

    • janos

      Hi Michaeldavid!

  • janos

    Hi Rick is Janos
    Thank you post the google search NBA ALL STARTS, save me the time. I hope blakes jump two cars this year.

    I so excite yesterday game CELTICS win over Knicks! Next ups supperbowl, will be nice game watch on tv or pubs.

    i like see web mangers officel predict superbowl. My predict NE 24 NY 20

    Janos

  • http://clarkwalkerstudio.com Luke

    I just want to make sure I understand… Deron Williams, the guy who's leading a 8-17 ballclub and who's in LAST place – he's on the all-star team? Is this also the same guy who just got taking to effing school by Jeremy Lin?! Honestly I just want to make sure I understand. D-Will is a solid, top 10 point guard in this league and his stats might look nice… but to me this isn't his year. I know that's blasphemy in the NBA world though since he's a darling

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