Last night if you had your TVs tuned to "NBA on TNT" you heard the selections made by the NBA coaches for the reserves of the Eastern, and Western all-star teams. Doesn't take a die hard NBA fan to notice that some pretty notable names weren't mentioned to participate in the all-star game in Houston, Feb. 17th ,2013. Well my fellow head scratchers I'm here to express the frustration most of you felt last night as I go through the most widely missed snubs of this years battle of the East vs the West.
Eastern Conference Snubs:
Brook Lopez (Brooklyn Nets)- In case you didn't read my colleague Anthony Tartamella's article, Lopez was without a doubt the biggest snub of the Eastern conference. I myself was taken back at this due to the fact that he has been sensational this season, and producing more than any of the bigs on the entire Eastern All-star team. Lopez's stat line of 18.6 PPG, 7.4 RPG, 2.1 BPG, .521 FG%, & a player efficiency rating of 25.45 (top 5 in the NBA). In fact not one Brooklyn Net made the all-star team, but if any truly deserved to make the team it was Brook Lopez.
Paul Pierce (Boston Celtics)- The "truth" was lied to last night as it seemed he'd sneak in to join his fellow teammates Kevin Garnett, and Rajon Rondo. Pierce had his early bumps in the road, but has kept the ship steady with a stat line of 18.9 PPG, 5.7 RPG, 3.8 APG, .422 FG%, & a player efficiency rating of 19.01. A productive year so far, but Pierce will just have to watch from the court side in Houston.
Deron Williams (Brooklyn Nets)- Just like his BK teammate Williams missed out on the all-star battle royal in Houston. Was this season a Brooklyn all-star boycott? Who knows but I could make a strong case for Williams being on the Eastern squad over Rajon Rondo (who's starting). Williams has been very productive this season with a stat line of 17.0 PPG, 7.8 APG, 3.3 RPG, .405 FG%, & a player effeciency rating of 18.31. I'm sure Deron, Brook, and the rest of their BK teammates will be happy to rest up during the break so they can continue their quest for Atlantic Division supremacy.
Brandon Jennings (Milwaukee Bucks)- Jennings one of the explosive young guards in this league has had a pretty good season. The thing is there are many other talented guards in the East that usually get the spots. He still deserves some credit thus far, with a stat line of 18.7 PPG, 5.8 APG, 3.5 RPG, .409 FG%, & a player efficiency rating of 17.55.
J.R. Smith (New York Knicks)- Right up there with Jamal Crawford for 6th man of the Year, Smith has been one of the more lethal bench weapons in the entire NBA. Especially during the absence of leader Carmelo Anthony where we saw Smith pick up the scoring load. Smith's stat line of 16.5 PPG, 2.9 APG, 5.1 RPG, .400 FG%, & a player efficiency rating of 15.66 proves how productive he's been for the Knicks this season.
Western Conference Snubs:
Stephen Curry (Golden State Warriors) - How did this young man not make the all-star team? No seriously...how? Curry's most healthy, and impressive season has seen his most impressive NBA stat line of 20.9 PPG, 6.6 APG, 4.1 RPG, .436 FG% (.451 3PT%), & a player efficiency rating of 19.85. Along with Brook Lopez this is the most mind boggling snub, as I can surely see Curry replacing Tony Parker for his spot without a doubt. However showing he is all team first, Curry tweeted out to congratulate his teammate David Lee for making the Western squad. Big time snub indeed.
Jamal Crawford (Los Angeles Clippers)- Most likely the leader in the race for 6th man of the Year, Crawford has been sensational for the LA Clippers. With CP3 out recently due to injury we've seen Crawford do a little bit of everything, but mostly scoring to keep them balanced on offense. With his stat line of 16.7 PPG, 2.5 APG, 1.7 RPG, .423 FG%, & a player efficiency rating of 16.78 he will continue to make a run for his second 6th man of the Year award.
O.J. Mayo (Dallas Mavericks)- Mayo is having his best season yet with a stat line of 18.2 PPG, 4.1 APG, 3.8 RPG, .459 FG% (.426 3PT%), & a player efficiency rating of 16.80. It would have been hard for him to make the cut this season any way, but I'm sure Dallas fans are just happy with the production they are getting from Mayo.
Marc Gasol (Memphis Grizzlies)- Now Gasol's teammate Zach Randolph did make the all-star squad, and deservedly. However the anchor of the Grizzlie team has, and will continue to be their big guy Marc Gasol. He has been a big time presence in the post both on offense, and defense which has allowed his teammates to play off of him. This season he has produced a stat line of 13.2 PPG, 7.4 RPG, 1.8 BPG, .480 FG%, & a player efficiency rating of 19.15.
Serge Ibaka (Oklahoma City Thunder)- Ibaka continues to be one of the premiere post defenders this league has to offer. OKC's enforcer has also added to his game this season becoming much better offensively. With a stat line of 14.0 PPG, 8.3 RPG, 2.8 BPG, .560 FG%, & a player efficiency rating of 18.78 Ibaka is worthy of an all-star bid, but with so much production going on with the bigs in the West someone had to stay home.
The 2013 NBA All-Star game is Feb. 17th, at 8pm. Houston, Texas will play host as the game will be played in the Toyota Center, home of the Houston Rockets. I hope you will enjoy all the all-star break activities!!!