loading Loading... Please wait...

All-star Selection: Cream of the Crop or Popularity Contest?

Posted by

One of my favorite times of the NBA season is All-star weekend. Getting the best of the West and best of the East together in one location is an exciting time for any basketball fan. However, even though I enjoy the games immensely, especially the 3rd and 4th quarters when the game actually gets serious, I do have issues with this star-riddled weekend – namely the selection process.

If someone were to ask you who would be the starting five for the West this year, you would probably insert Steve Nash, Kobe Bryant, Tim Duncan, Dirk Nowitski and Yao Ming into the lineup - or something to that effect. But ask yourself why? Did you really take a look at their individual numbers and performances over the course of the first half of the season? Or, did you simply come up with the biggest names in the game? If you did, in fact, use the stats to help guide your decision, I applaud you. You are a true NBA fan. But, I would venture to say that most voters do not take the time and effort to see who is really deserving of an All-star selection.

For instance, everyone knows that Steve Nash is going to get the nod for starting point guard in the West. Now, is that because he has been the best point guard in the league or because his successive MVPs have made him a mega star? If you look at the numbers, you would see that Chris Paul should be the starting point guard having averaged 22 points, 11 assists, 3 steals and a 4 to 1 assists to turnover ratio per game. Nash only has better numbers in the assist category, leading Paul by just 1 assist per game. You could even make the argument for Baron Davis starting over Steve Nash as BD averages more points, rebounds, blocks and steals than Steve Nash.

Another prime example of this is Carlos Boozer. You would think that avergaing 24 points and 11 rebounds a game would trump the 19 and 11 and 22 and 9 put up by Tim Duncan and Dirk Nowitski, respectively. But will Boozer get the start at forward? No. It will be Dirk and Duncan every time. And why is that? Because fans vote for the big names and their favorite players, overlooking the deserving candidates.

My point is this. The All-star game is an absolute honor to those who are fortunate enough to participate. Let’s not take that honor away from the players who have outworked and outperformed the traditional “All-stars” this season.


Nishan Wilde is VP of Sales for Robbins Sports and Athletics, an online source for Basketball Hoops, Baseball Uniforms and Punching Bags.