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)
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