The NBA All Star Reserves Are Out, So Let's Talk Snubs
While there's a little drama when it comes to the All Star Starters, mostly it's chalk. There will be one or two massive snubs like Embiid this year, but we generally have an idea of what it'll look like.
With the reserves, there's way more chaos. Way more snubs and a much higher potential that multiple fanbases are about to be very mad online. Waiting for that Shams bomb is way more tense for the reserves than it is for the starters, and one look at the lists this year you can see why.
If you thought there was drama surrounding the East starters, may I present to you the East reserves. While some names aren't all that shocking, it's hard to notice who's missing. No Pascal Siakam? No James Harden? No Jalen Brunson? As they say, you can't put someone on the list without taking someone off, so I would just like to ask if Jrue Holiday has honestly had a better season than all three of those players? That cannot be the case.
I want to acknowledge that as a Celts guy that probably sounds biased, but I'm also saying someone like James Harden has been better so this isn't a Celts thing this is just a common sense thing.
Holiday has played 6 more games than Harden, that's not all that much when you factor in that Harden leads the league in assists. I suppose you could make the case that the Bucks and Sixers having a similar record actually works in Jrue's favor since Giannis/Middleton have been out, so just go down the list.
Fine, then explain Pascal Siakam. The Raptors are only 1.5 games behind the Bulls in the Lottery. That's basically the same thing, and their guy got in. You're telling me 24.9/8.0/6.2 isn't All Star worthy? That's crazy. Siakam also has more than enough games played (43), so it's not as if he's missed a bunch of time. Are the Raptors' struggles really on Siakam? I'm not sure that's totally fair, especially when he's producing at this level. That's a tough snub.
Jalen Brunson basically saved the Knicks so that's a tough snub for him too. At least the Knicks got Randle in but I certainly would understand why their fans would be pissed that another guard got in over Brunson given how great he's been for them.
When it comes to some of the others on the list, it is cool to see Tyrese Haliburton make it. Wally Szczerbiak is probably pissed
But make no mistake, before his injury Haliburton was having a massive season. He led the league in assists for a long stretch and is only 1 of 3 guys averaging at least 10.0 (Harden/Jokic). The Pacers were sneaky good and flirting with the Play In/6 seed for a while and only really cratered because Haliburton got hurt, so it's cool to see him get some recognition for his awesome season.
After a few minutes of digesting the East list, Shams hit us with the West.
As crazy as the East may have been, the West is no different. Look at that list! What stands out to you first? For me it was SGA/Sabonis/Lauri/JJJ all for different reasons. For SGA, I mean he's having an All NBA caliber season let alone All Star so that was expected, but his first "I've arrived" moment. The Thunder are going to be pretty damn good before you know it and SGA is a gigantic reason why.
In a dream season, the Kings needed someone. Whether it was Sabonis or Fox, you couldn't not have someone from a top 3 seed in the All Star team. I'm just so happy for Kings fans that they get to experience a season like this. Few fanbases have suffered like Kings fans so not only seeing your team be good but also having an All Star is what it's all about. You could technically make the case that Sabonis should have been a starter, but that's an entirely different topic.
It's also very cool to see Lauri make it and frankly I don't know how you keep him off. He basically took his FIBA version of his game and brought it over to the NBA. I mean 25/9 on 52/43% splits is big time stuff. He's developed into his unstoppable Dirk-Lite stretch big that has seen his offensive production skyrocket since a team decided to give him the ball and run everything through him.
The biggest snub in this conference is obviously Anthony Edwards. That's a tough name to leave off this list when you see who else made it.
For starters, no NBA player has played more games than Anthony Edwards (54). In those games, he's averaged a solid 24.9/6.1/4.6 on 46/37% splits for a team currently in the top 6 in the conference. You can't not have that guy in the All Star game. Someone like Jaren Jackson Jr has had an awesome defensive season and is a really good player, no doubt. He's also only played 35 games. The Clippers only have a 1 game lead over the Wolves. That's nothing. Paul George has only played 37 games.
All of this is also true for De'Aaron Fox. He's on the better team than George, he's played 47 games and his 24.3/4.1/6.2 on 50/33% is nothing to sneeze at. His development has been a huge part of why the Kings have sustained this level of success and it's another case of a guy who has a worthy case and also played way more games is getting snubbed. That's messed up.
I'm sorry, but availability should matter. Not only does Anthony Edwards have the team success and individual stats to warrant being an All Star, but he's also literally played every game. To have two guys who have missed massive amounts of time over him and Fox is fucked up if you ask me.
Of course, maybe you disagree. That's what I love about this time of year, we all get to argue and tell each other how stupid the other person is and how right you actually are. Every fanbase gets defensive, it's glorious. So let's hear it. What was your biggest snub? Who are you taking off?