Every year, there are several seemingly deserving players who are left off of the All-Star team. This year was no different, as a number of stars were snubbed.
While it’s likely that two of these players will be added to the team by NBA Commissioner Adam Silver as injury replacements for the West’s Kobe Bryant and the East’s Dwyane Wade, some will inevitably be sitting at home during All-Star Weekend.
Here are the top All-Star snubs, according to our Jessica Camerato and Cody Taylor:
Sacramento Kings (16-28)
23.8 points, 12.3 rebounds, 1.6 blocks
This one has got to sting. After being passed over last season, Cousins has put together a noteworthy year to date. He is averaging more rebounds than anyone selected (third overall in the NBA) and ranks fifth in scoring (first at his position).
Portland Trail Blazers (32-14)
21.8 points, 6.2 assists, 4.6 rebounds
The Portland Trail Blazers are ranked third in the Western Conference (32-14) and much of that can be attributed to Lillard. This All-Star team had fierce competition in the backcourt, but given the Trail Blazers’ success it was surprising to see him left off the roster.
Orlando Magic (15-33)
19.5 points, 11.2 rebounds, 0.8 blocks
This is a situation where a losing team record seemed to hinder an All-Star look. Vucevic is tied for second in double doubles with Anthony Davis (27), is third in scoring at his position, ranks seventh in rebounding (one spot ahead of Davis). But with the Orlando Magic at 15-33, these efforts can fall by the wayside in voting.
Atlanta Hawks (38-8)
13 points (53% 3-PT FG), 4.2 rebounds and 2.9 assists
Korver’s best chance at making an All-Star game came this season. The Hawks have been one of the best teams in the league because of Korver’s potential historic season. Korver is on pace to become the only qualified player in NBA history to shoot 50 percent from the field, 50 percent from three-point range and 90 percent from the free throw line. Korver also helped his other three All-Star teammates (Jeff Teague, Paul Millsap, Al Horford) get voted onto the team with his ability to space the floor and knock down shots.
Memphis Grizzlies (33-12)
17.4 points, 5.6 assists and 3.4 rebounds
Conley is one of the most underrated point guards in the league and he’ll be a candidate to take Kobe Bryant’s spot in the game (along with Lillard and Cousins). Conley is a great two-way player and arguably has had a better impact than Chris Paul, who was selected ahead of him.
Houston Rockets (32-14)
16.3 points, 11 rebounds and 1.4 blocks
Howard’s streak of All-Star appearances will likely come to an end this season. When healthy, he is one of the best players on the court with his ability to control the paint. Howard arguably should have been in the game over Durant, as he’s played in 11 more games than Durant has on the season (and Houston has the better record), but Howard’s latest injury came at the worst time for his All-Star chances. The injury will likely keep him from being named an injury replacement too.
Honorable Mention: Monta Ellis (Dallas Mavericks), Joakim Noah (Chicago Bulls), Kevin Love (Cleveland Cavaliers), Dirk Nowitzki (Dallas Mavericks), Zach Randolph (Memphis Grizzlies)
Report: NBA All-Star Game Starters Announced
LeBron James, Giannis Antetokounmpo and rising second-year stars Luka Doncic and Trae Young headline the star-studded group of present and future superstars who make up the starters for the 69th All-Star Game.
James, the catalyst for the Western Conference-leading Los Angeles Lakers, will captain the Western Conference team for the second straight season. Antetokounmpo, the Milwaukee Bucks’ star and reigning Kia MVP, captains the Eastern Conference team for a second straight season as well.
A fresh face in the starters’ mix this season is Dallas wunderkind Luka Doncic, who joins Houston’s James Harden as the two starters in the backcourt. Clippers forward and reigning Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard and Lakers forward Anthony Davis round out the All-L.A. frontcourt.
Boston’s Kemba Walker is joined by Atlanta’s Trae Young in the East backcourt. Like Doncic, Young is a first-time All-Star and starter in just his second NBA season. Antetokounmpo will be flanked by Philadelphia’s Joel Embiid and Toronto’s Pascal Siakam, another first time All-Star and starter, in the East frontcourt.
Adam Silver Believes Next Year’s ASG Draft Will be Televised
NBA commissioner Adam Silver said he was pleased with the new format for the league’s All-Star Game and believed that next year’s player draft would be televised.
“I thought it was incredible. I can’t tell you how appreciative I am of the players,” Silver told ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne following a 148-145 win for Team LeBron over Team Stephen at Staples Center in Los Angeles.
2018 NBA All-Star Sunday Recap
Michael Petrower recaps the All-Star Game from Sunday in Los Angeles.
The 2018 NBA All Star Game had some added appeal this year, with Captains LeBron James and Stephen Curry selecting playground style from the pool of All-Stars. Although it was not televised, it drew a lot of interest to say the least.
Team Lebron was headlined by Kevin Durant (the alleged first pick), Anthony Davis, Russell Westbrook, and Kyrie Irving. Sadly, Team Lebron suffered big losses with John Wall, Demarcus Cousins, Kevin Love and Kristaps Porzingis going down with injuries. Team Stephen was led by Giannis Antetokounmpo, James Harden, Joel Embiid and Demar DeRozan.
NBA fans were ready to indulge on the highlight real of plays to commence…That was, until the NBA inflicted a marathon-like performance that seemed a bit unnecessary, to say the least. Kevin Hart was at the center of theatrics that had NBA fans scratching their heads questioning what was on their television screen. Fergie topped off the saga with what was one of the more questionable national anthems we’ve seen in recent years. However, if you stuck around long enough, the game started at 8:40 PM EST and the flashy plays that we hoped for, began.
Joel Embiid made his first A;l-Star game appearance and kicked off the scoring festivities for Team Stephen with a ferocious and-one dunk. Team Stephen led all of the first quarter and won the quarter 42-31. Karl Anthony Towns led the first quarter scoring with 11 points. Team LeBron, however would storm back and cut the lead to two, 78-76 at half. LeBron came into his 14th straight All-Star game and lead his team at the half with 15 points. Klay Thompson also lead Team Stephen with 15 points at half.
The second half ensued and after some back and forth between the two teams, Team Stephen was leading by three going into the fourth quarter, 112-109. Team Stephen grew their lead to 11 while LeBron and KD got some rest. But after the two came back in, the 11-point deficit was erased after a LeBron three and the teams were now tied at 144 with 1:16 left in the fourth quarter.
DeRozan would make a free throw to put Team Stephen up one point, but Lebron followed with a strong two-pointer to put his team up one. DeRozan tried to answer, but threw away a pass which resulted in an easy two points for Russell Westbrook to ice the game. Team LeBron was the 2018 All Star Game winner with a score of 148-145.
LeBron James went on to win his third All Star MVP after finishing with 29 points to go along with 10 rebounds, eigh assists and a steal on 12-17 shooting. DeRozan and Damian Lillard lead Team Stephen with 21 points each.