Wild Wild West: Picking the NBA All-Star Reserves

The NBA All-Star reserves will be announced tomorrow night after starters were selected last week for the annual event taking place in Los Angeles. We already know Derrick Rose, Dwayne Wade, LeBron James, Amare Stoudemire and Dwight Howard will represent the East, while Chris Paul, Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant, Carmelo Anthony and Yao Ming have been selected in the West. With so much talent and impressive performances so far this season, someone will definitely be left off the roster, especially in the Western Conference, where as many as five deserving players could not make the team.

Each conference team will have a seven-player bench and the Western team will actually have an injury replacement due to Yao being selected as a starter. David Stern will make the final pick.

Let’s take a look at the deserving players on each side and who may end up with the short end of the stick.

WESTERN CONFERENCE

Reserves

Tim Duncan (Commissioner’s Pick)

Pau Gasol

Manu Ginobili

Blake Griffin

Kevin Love

Dirk Nowitzki

Russell Westbrook

Deron Williams

The Western Conference is near impossible to predict correctly as selections could go any number of ways. The guys that are sure to be there: Pau Gasol, Manu Ginobili, Blake Griffin and Dirk Nowitzki. That leaves just three spots left. Deron Williams will probably be on this team for the next ten years so do not be surprised to see him there this year. Russell Westbrook is averaging over 20 points and eight assists for a first-place team so I think he needs to on this roster. That leaves one spot for everyone else. Since I think Tim Duncan will end up being Stern’s pick to replace Yao, Kevin Love gets the nod. I recently saw the stat that says he is averaging more rebounds than anyone since Dennis Rodman, and “the crazy one” gave you nothing on offense. Love averages 20 points a game. Those numbers should be enough to overcome a last-place team.

Snubs

LaMarcus Aldridge

Chauncey Billups

Monta Ellis

Rudy Gay

Steve Nash

Lamar Odom

Zach Randolph

Tony Parker

Parker is the point guard for a number-one team, but it’s a stacked year so no dice. Monta Ellis averaged 25.2 points per game last year and didn’t make the team. This year he is averaging 25.1. LaMarcus Aldridge has been playing great as of late, but was quoted as saying he did not expect to make the team so no harm no foul. Gay and Randolph have been great for the Grizzlies, but I still don’t think the league is ready to have anyone from Memphis on the team (although Randolph’s point and rebound averages make him a deserving selection). The toughest omission here is Steve Nash. To not have the former MVP on the team seems almost wrong and I would not be surprised to see him make it over Kevin Love.

EASTERN CONFERENCE

Reserves

Ray Allen

Chris Bosh

Kevin Garnett

Al Horford

Joe Johnson

Paul Pierce

Rajon Rondo

The reserves for the East are fairly obvious to pick. Just about everyone here is a shoe-in. A case could be made for Raymond Felton from our snub list, but there is no one that you can really take off the reserve list to put him on. Josh Smith has had a solid season, but once again, not good enough to trump anyone on the reserves.

Snubs

Carlos Boozer

Elton Brand

Raymond Felton

Danny Granger

Andre Iguodala

Josh Smith

No matter who is picked to be on the teams, it should be a phenomenal game, and one that I will enjoy more than since (yes I am going to continue to use this line) when Michael Jordan was still in the league.

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2 Responses

  1. I don’t think the Celtics will place 4 all stars. Someone is going to get snubbed, possibly even 2 guys will. Ray Ray usually gets the short end of the stick and KG has missed 9 games.

  2. From what I’ve heard from various writers around the country, the Celtics will definietly have four All-Stars. Luckily the East is not nearly as stacked as the West. Ray Felton has a chance, but his field-goal percentage and D’Antoni’s system limits his potential. Josh Smith is probably next in line, but expect to Al Horford and Joe Johnson to make it over him. That said, anything can happen.

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