It’s that time of the year again on the NBA calendar where the All-Star starters are announced and the criticising begins. However there is a strange thing with this criticism, the fans are the ones digging their claws into anyone that they can get their hands on and yet, the fans are the ones that vote in the All-Star starters. With the blatant errors in the starting line-ups for the past two All-Star games the question needs to be asked, “do the fans really deserve to vote like this?”
As a first point of discussion I’m going to draw your attention to the 2010 All-Star roster and voting. Tracy McGrady was very close to being named in the starting line-up, even though he had played a grand total of 45 minutes for the entire season. Now, remember that the All-Star games is taken approximately in the middle of the season, so half-way through the year T-Mac had played 45 minutes! Luckily in the last round of voting the fans seemed to wake up and Steve Nash, who was a deserving entrant, ended up passing McGrady and got the starting nod.
My second point is that this year Yao Ming was selected a starter, there is only the one fairly large and glaring problem with that. Yao has a broken foot and will not be suiting up for any team, let alone an All-Star team any time in the near future. I have issues with other parts of the roster as well, but this is the main problem right here!
There have been two main players that deserve the spot over Yao, Kevin Love and Blake Griffin from Minnesota and LA Clippers respectively. Let me regale you with some statistics on the pair –
- Kevin Love is number one in the league for double-doubles (double figures for two statistical categories)
- Blake Griffin is number two in the league for double-doubles
- Love is the only player to complete a 30 point, 20 rebound game not once, not twice but three times this season
- Griffin is the first rookie since Allen Iverson to score multiple 40 point games
- Love is averaging 21.6pts, 15.6 rebounds and 2.5 assists per game
- Griffin is averaging 22.6pts, 12.8 rebounds and 3.5 assists per game
Now to me and the majority of basketball fans out there it is clear to see that those two are having an outstanding season. They are having “All-Star” seasons!
This brings me to the point of the article, do fans really need to vote for things like this?
My answer is no, it should be left up to the coaches and players, team captains and leadership to make up the player bracket. Whenever fans get involved with any sort of voting it becomes a popularity contest and it is seen to its fullest extent here. I mean no disrespect to China or the people from there, but if it wasn’t for the people of China Yao Ming would be nowhere near the All-Star game.
The popularity contest needs to stop and the players that actually deserve to make it into the All-Star weekend need to be selected. The only people that have the credentials to do that are the people participating in the NBA. The popularity votes don’t just stop at Yao Ming, they are also there for Carmelo Anthony, Kobe Bryant, Dwight Howard and dare I say it LeBron James.
Take the power out of the hands of the fans and the quality and viewing pleasure of the game won’t change, in fact it would probably end up a better spectacle. But in the end the fans will win out, simply because the NBA, and other sporting organisations, don’t wish to do anything that could have a negative impact on them.