Who Got Robbed? 2008 NBA All-Star Snubs

The National Basketball Associations is loaded with exceptional players that do things on the court we as fans can only dream about.  So when the time comes for NBA coaches and fans to choose All-Stars, the 12 best (and fan favorite)  players in the league, there are bound to be some unlucky guys that don’t make the cut.  Here’s the Recliner GM’s take on the players that did, and didn’t get invited to New Orleans this season.

East Starters

West Starters

Jason Kidd – Guard

Allen Iverson – Guard

Dwyane Wade – Guard

Kobe Bryant – Guard

LeBron James – Forward

Carmelo Anthony – Forward

Kevin Garnett – Forward

Tim Duncan – Forward

Dwight Howard – Center

Yao Ming – Center

Who Should be Starting

Surprisingly I think we (the fans)did a good job picking the All-Star starters based on current season performance and potential entertainment value.  With that said there was one very noticeable slip-up.

Chris Paul – The clear mid-season MVPshould be making his first All-Star game as a starter.  Who would he replace?  Sad to say my beloved Allen Iverson.  AI does belong on the team as a reserve because he is having one of his most efficient season of his career, continuing to put up ridiculous numbers at his size. Chris Paul on the other hand is without a doubt the best PG in the NBA this year and the 2nd best guard (behind Kobe)overall.  Unfortunately for Paul a two main factors were working against him. 

  1. The Hornets weren’t expected to be this good this season therefore not much TV time scheduled to showcase his game.  
  2. Iverson has developed a cult like following the last 11 years that has spread far beyond the borders of Philadelphia and Denver.

Besides Paul I don’t have any qualms with any of the other starters.  But I am sure you guys do.  So make a case (in the comments) for another player you think should be starting (and who you would bench) and I will respond with my argument for the voted in player. 

On to the reserves…

East Reserves

West Reserves

Chauncey Billups – Guard

Chris Paul – Guard

Rip Hamilton – Guard

Steve Nash – Guard

Caron Butler – Forward

Dirk Nowitzki- Forward

Paul Pierce – Forward

Carlos Boozer- Forward

Chris Bosh – Center

Amare Stoudemire – Center

Antawn Jamison – Wild Card

Brandon Roy – Wild Card

Joe Johnson – Wild Card

David West – Wild Card

Who Should be on the Team That Got Snubbed

Luckily the coaches pick the reserves and not the fans, otherwise there would be a whole lot of upset NBA players.  Why?  We (the fans) are not always the most rational bunch especially when it comes to our favorite players.  That is the main reason you see Vince Carter being named a starter when his best playing days (aka playing hard every night) had passed him.  With that said…

The biggest All-Star game surprise addition that really shouldn’t be a surprise to you:

David West -  Yes, the Western conference is stacked with forwards and this season West has been one of the best.  Although Chris Paul is the most impactful player on that team West has been a consistent force with his inside game.  19.6ppg, 9.4rpg and just over 1 block a night on the best team in the West means you’re an All-Star in my book.  Sorry Josh Howard who also deserved to make the team. 

 

Marcus Camby- I am with Charles Barkley on this omission.  I don’t know how much more I have to say (check the write-up & comments here) about this guy.  His impact and importance to the Nuggets team rivals both Carmelo’s and Iverson’s.  He is the best defensive player in the league and shouldn’t be penalized because the All-Star game is predominately an offensive display to benefit the fans.  Especially when one of the measuring sticks of a player is All-Star game appearances.  Sadly this makes sense because if Boston with the best record in the league doesn’t have 3 guys make it Denver surely should not either.  I think Camby deserves it over Melo considering Anthony’s scoring and shooting numbers are all down this season whereas Camby is having the best season of his career in rebounds and blocks.

Other deserving players:

Ray Allen – Question is do you give Boston 3 players?  If so Ray Allen should have made it over Joe Johnson for sure.

Josh Smith – If you’re going to put an Atlanta Hawk on the team I prefer Smith over Joe Johnson ALL DAY.

Baron Davis – Among point guards B. Diddy is 1st in scoring, 2nd in rebounding, 7th in assist and sports a respectable 3.0 assist/turnover ratio.  Come to the East and pick up where AI left off as an All-Star Starter.

Josh Howard – He was an All-Star reserve last season and has increased his scoring, rebounding and shooting %s this season.  So why isn’t he on the team again?

Deron Williams – Only thing I can really say is “sorry dude.”  There are way too many stud guards in the West.  Had AI not been voted in by the fans it would have been intersting what the coaches would have done.

Jose Calderon – He really just suffered from not being a starter all year.  Had he been the open day starter you’d be hard pressed not to pick him over Joe Johnson.

Hedu Turkoglu – He has surprisingly been better than Rashard Lewis this season, at a much cheaper price as well.  But I wouldn’t pick him over Butler or Pierce this season.

Tony Parker & Andrew Bynum – Got hurt and ended their hopes of running & gunning with the rest of the All-Stars.

Chris Kaman & Al Jefferson – Coaches rarely reward the bad teams.  Tough luck.

Manu Ginobili – TELL YOUR COACH YOU’RE A DAMN STARTER.   

Snubs or not we all know the game will be just as exciting as ever.  But there are only 12 spots and the coaches have an impossible job picking the 14 best players not chosen by the fans.  So which one of your favorite players got robbed?

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  1. [...] Dannie wrote a fantastic post today on “Who Got Robbed? 2008 NBA All-Star Snubs”Here’s ONLY a quick extractSo when the time comes for NBA coaches and fans to choose All-Stars, the 12 best (and fan favorite) players in the league, there are bound to be some unlucky guys that don’t make the cut. Here’s the Recliner GM’s take on the players … [...]

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  3. Vince Carter’s playing days are behind him, last year being the best season of his career…good point…idiot
    He may be averaging only 21 points this season (only). And he also might be having his best passing year (5.5).
    Say what you want about his competitiveness, but I’d rather see a half assed vince carter than a full out trying yet boring richard hamilton.
    Lets compare the numbers shall we:
    VC: 21, 5, 5
    Facemask: 19, 4, 3
    Hamilton is a mediocre player in the league.
    Oh but how he moves without the ball! He’s an all star!

  4. Aaron – Why do you think the coaches didn’t vote Vince in? It’s not just about the stats.

    1. He is on a losing team which is why RJ isn’t a reserve either.

    2. No matter what you say he simply doesn’t play hard all the time. Especially on defense.

    I used to really like VC until he started getting soft, settling for jumpers all the time and not bringing that fire he use to. But I knew the Carter followers would jump all over the comment. That’s why I wrote it.

  5. Aaron, all due respect, but last year was in no way VC’s “best year”. Like Dannie just posted…stats are awfully good at hiding some weaknesses in players, and VC is a prime example.

    Charles Barkley, for all the idiocy that can sometimes come out of his mouth, every now and again makes a good call. One of my favorite things he talks about is scoring 20+ points “quietly”. VC is the definition of this. Carter is not a guy that will hoist a team onto his shoulders and carry them to a victory. Last year, did he score in bursts, and get 5 asts and 5 rbs? Sure.

    But his game has changed dramatically. Go back and watch how he played for Toronto from 99-02…Vince Carter took the ball to the rim like he had something to prove. He got to the line more. He used to be a better defender, and used to play with passion. Back at his height in Toronto he was just starting to come into his own as a player that could make those around him better, improved 3 point shot, etc…

    And last year, he hoisted up jumpshots. That’s about it. Is he a good player? Sure he is…he’s a great scorer. The problem is that Vince Carter had the talent to be the unquestionable best 2-3 swingman in the league after Kobe Bryant (and probably T-Mac)…and never really lived up to that. He allows himself to be come lost in the offense, to not play with authority, and takes the easy way out by shooting J’s (and ill advised ones) instead of driving more and creating opportunities for other teammates. He’s a passive player with no heart…there’s a reason that the Nets have sucked during Kidd’s resurgence, and that reason is not Kidd, nor just their weak frontcourt.

  6. Dave T – Couldn’t have said it better myself.

  7. Dave T is completely 100% right about Vince Carter.

    But Aaron is even more right about Richard Hamilton.

    I started cracking up when Dannie pulled Jose Calderon out his ass though…but seriously why all the hating on Joe Johnson? What did he ever do to you? Did he talk about about your girlfriend or disrespect your momma’s cooking or something?

    I mean damn. WTF?.

    Did you watch him on Team USA ?

    Have you watched him play at all???

    He is is better shooter and a better scorer than Josh Smith, plus he turns the ball over less and makes other players around him better (including I might add Josh Smith) with his passing. If he had not been such a dumbass and stayed his behind in Phoenix he’d be rockin some jewelry right about now.

    The Celtics to my understanding have not lost to a Western Conference team yet (13-0 I think) and have the best record in the NBA. To Aaron’s aforementioned point about Richard Hamilton…why is Ray Allen not on the All-Star team again? Would anyone have really objected if Boston had 3 players? Is there anyone in the known universe outside of Detroit who thinks Hamilton is the better basketball player?

    Just curious…

  8. B00da – You definitely have legit points. Let me start by saying I don’t “hate” Joe Johnson at all. I think he is a very good player having a slightly less productive season compared to last year. And when considering whether a player should be on the All-Star team I always factor in if he was an All-Star the previous season and if he is having the same or better year AND if another player on that players team has stepped their game at all. That is certainly the case in Atlanta this season.

    1. Joe Johnson is shooting 40.7% that is just horrible but even worse considering he shot 47.1% last season which was fantastic for a guard taking 20 shots per game. Other notable numbers down this season: 3pt% and PPG 21.2 vs. 25 last year. Only major improvement comes in the form of 85% free throw shooting. Everything else is flat or +/- less than 1.

    2. Josh Smith on the other hand is scoring 18ppg this season on 3 less shot attempts than Johnson and shooting better at 43.3%. Everything else is negligible +/- over last season. But he is as effective as Joe Johnson in 5 less mpg. Smith is having a better season than last year whereas Johnson is down so why should Joe make the team this year not playing as well? And Smith’s impact is arguably just as significant if not more since he is getting 8 boards, over 3 blocks and 2 steals per game. He is all over the place on defense. The big question becomes who is the better player on the team. Right now I would say Johnson barely, if not even, based only on history alone not this season’s numbers. But I think next year (if Smith is even still there) that won’t be the case anymore. Oh yeah if you care about PER; Johnson =16.11 (down from 19.56 last year) vs. Smith = 20.16 (up from 18.39)

    3. On to Jose Calderon – Get out of your system the thought of “Who the hell is that? I don’t think of him when you say All-Star.” Just because he’s not the typical All-Star in the fans mind doesn’t mean his play hasn’t been worthy of a bid. Why do you think Toronto hasn’t fallen apparent since T.J. Ford went down? Obvious answer is Chris Bosh has played better and he has. But Calderon has stepped his game up considerably more as a starter. And since he plays the runs the team at the point it’s even more important. Numbers: 12.3ppg, 8.8apg, 1.6to (please don’t overlook that 5.5 assist/to ratio best in the NBA), and shooting 52% from the field, 44% from three and 91% from the line and somehow gets 3.2 boards as well (Joe Johnson – 4.4 since that’s who your defending). PER – 22.27 (19th in the NBA, 3rd among PGs, 7th among ALL guards). What all that equates to? Jose Calderon is one of the 12 best players in the East therefore deserving of an All-Star bid.

    4. Rip Hamilton – I personally would replace Hamilton with Calderon and Joe Johnson with Josh Smith or Ray Allen. But the coaches saw that Rip is shooting the best of his career from the field and from three while committing 1.9 turnovers the lowest of his career when playing 30+ minutes per game. And he is on the second best team in the East with more than 30 wins and that team should have 2 players make it.

  9. Hamilton should definitely be on the squad over Vince Carter, he doesn’t even look like he wants to be on the court half the time. Granted a half ass Vince Carter is still better than most other players in the league, he is not deserving of an All Star bid. Carter is in no way shape or form playing better than Rip. He doesn’t play D and has his head in his ass half the time. I used to love VC, but for some reason he fell off big time.

    Ray Allen should definitely be on the team.

  10. [...] know the Boston Celtics Fox Sports    Al Jefferson a forgotten young star The Recliner GM    2008 NBA All Star snubs Enterprise   Rivers hopes Celtics take heed of Mavs stumble Slam Dunk Central   Two out of three [...]

  11. I think the guy out of everyone I’m most disappointed in not making the all star game is Baron Davis. I’m not saying he particularly deserves to be in it over anyone else in the Western Conference…as far as guards go, Chris Paul, Nash, Kobe, AI and Brandon Roy definitely deserve to get in over Baron.

    That said, Baron Davis’ resurrected career is one of my favorite stories in the NBA. We’re talking about a guy that should have been a top 3-4 mega superstar guard in this league the last 5 years…and that basically didn’t happen because of injuries. I always though t his old NO/Charlotte team in the early 00’s (Baron, Mashburn, D Wesley, PJ Brown, Magloire/Campbell), if Baron and Mash had stayed healthy, would have been contending in the east for a while.

    This is a guy that was raised in just atrocious circumstances, was kept in line by a loving grandmother, has nothing but respect for the game, his family, and gives back to his community…and while, yes, Baron’s decision making can be flat out awful at times lol, the David beating Goliath last year in taking down Dallas, and his continued success this year (roughly 20 ppg, 8.5+ apg off the top of my head), he has been playing at an amazingly high level. If positions didn’t matter for reserves, I’d axe Amare Stoudamire in a heartbeat so Baron or Camby could be playing in NO.

    Dannie, I’m 100% with you about Josh Smith; he’s Atlanta’s all star, not Joe Johnson. I think Josh Smith, Gerald Wallace and our own Iguodala are really developing at a ridiculous rate to be three of the most versatile offensive AND defensive players in the league that are great “second/third” fiddles for their respective teams. Gerald Wallace in particular I think will be a regular all star for years to come, Charlotte’s got a bright future.

  12. First off I wish someone would publish the votes that coaches gave for their reserves. Coaches name’s don’t have to be revealed obviously but it would be interesting to see just how close baron, gino, allen etc were —in making the team

    -AL jefferson on a shitty team :(
    When someone avg’s 20+ points and 10+ in either assists or rebounds usually signifies all-star material

  13. Jeff – I second that. I would love to see the 1-7 voting the coaches made. Would be very interesting.

    I read another interesting suggestion on a basketball forum about some how letting the players have a vote. I actually agree with that as well. For one you will get a more statistically valid response with the 400+ players voting. The players should have just as much a say in who is an All-Star as the coaches. They are the one’s that have to defend Al Jefferson, Ray Allen and Baron Davis!

  14. I’m heavily biased, because I’ve had Nets season tickets since well before the arrival of Jason Kidd, but I’d have to put Richard Jefferson on the snubbed list.

    I am NOT a Vince Carter fan, but I could go on for pages about that.

  15. 9nine9 – I have never been a big RJ fan simply because he doesn’t do much more than score. This season he has a 1 to 1 assist/turnover ratio (2.8apg) only 4.4rpg and isn’t even getting 1 clean steal per game (0.9spg). I like the 24ppg with a decent shooting % and the 10 FT attempts per game but thats all he is giving you. There are too many other more well-rounded players for RJ as is to be consider one of the 12 best in the East.

  16. The personal biases of people are pretty clear in the replies of many people.

    All that aside, Baron Davis should have been an all-star and let me go out on the limb here and say over Allen Iverson. That’s right fool, I said it.

    Allen Iverson is a great player, perhaps the greatest at his size. However, in my books, I have Baron Davis starting at point, Iverson coming off the bench. Brandon Roy can wait until next year.

    Who would you want running the “point” – Davis or Iverson? Heck, Iverson does not even run the point on his team.

    Iverson may be a top 5 guard in the league. Let’s look at the nuggets. Kenyon Martin, Marcus Camby, and Carmelo Anthony. Throw Kobe on that team you have a championship. Throw Nash in there, and you have a championship contender. However, throw Iverson in there, and you barely have a playoff team.

    That’s not an opinion, just a statistic.

  17. What about Z!!!!!!! He is an amazing center who got pushed aside by a damn forward! He’s the only guy who is 7 ft. tall who can shoot mid-range jumpers with a high percentage. Not only that he shoots around 83% for free throws. That’s amazing! He is the best player on the Cavaliers, next to LEBRON obvisously, who constantly gets over looked. You should know, you just over looked him too!

  18. Mandeep – The ballot has you select two “guards” it’s not broken out by PG or SG so AI and Kobe are voted in as two SGs since AI’s is consider a shooting guard. And only played the point early this year while Carter and Chucky Atkins were injured.

    Give me Iverson over Baron Davis all day. Davis barely averages more than 1 assist more than AI and his assist/turnover ratio is a 3 compared to Iversons 2.09. AI is scoring more and shooting better. And if you factor in durability, well everyone knows AI is a “Warrior” and Davis has been injury-prone his entire career.

    With that said Baron Davis DiD deserve to be on the team I agree but in no way shape or form did he deserve to be a starter. Did you forget Chris Paul? If anyone got shafted by the fans it was him. I would have been cool with AI off the bench and B. Davis over Brandon Roy. But Roy’s team success and leadership played a bigger part in that selection I believe.

    Denver isn’t barely a playoff team they ARE a playoff team and only 1/2 game out of the division lead, which would make them a 4th seed based on playoff structure.

    Kobe is the best player in the NBA put him on a lot of teams and they are contenders right away (and please don’t assume anyone just wins a championship that’s just ridiculous that is why they play the games) – what’s your point? I saw not one stat in your entire comment. We aren’t comparing Iverson to Kobe here are we? We are comparing him to Baron Davis who IVERSON is clearly better than over the course of their careers. You just need some other ammo to put AI down because you don’t have enough talking just about Baron Davis. But for anyone that wants real stats here are some AI stats Baron Davis will never come close to reaching: http://reclinergm.wordpress.com/2008/01/07/amazing-irregularity-10-stats-unique-to-ai/

  19. I just wanted to wiegh in on this convo. I have to say that while I like Kobe, i’m not so sure that if you put him on the Nuggets they will automatically get a “championship”…or anyother team for that matter. He’s a great player….but to say that he would do better with that team (who has been riddled with injuries) then Iverson to me is just not FACT. Kobe can’t even get his own team out the first round. I’m just saying, let him get the Lakers out the first round before trying to compare him to what Iverson is doing with the Nuggets. Plus, Iverson has been leading teams his entire career and has gotten to the Finals on his own, Kobe hasn’t done a thing without Shaq and just now started playing team ball.

    Also, I love CP3 and Steve Nash….but like someone said, Iverson is a SG that got voted in by the fans…not a PG. I feel like his 27 ppg and 7 asst deserves to start just as much as anyone else. Also, people fail to mention that Iversons overrall stats have been better then Kobe’s this year (with the exception of ppg, which I think Kobe is only .2 ahead of Iverson and rebounds) and no one is questioning Kobe. So i’m just saying, lets be fair here. The problem is not with the players, the problem is that the West is so deep with talent, they have about 10 players that could start an All-Star game at any given time. So while Iverson my be playing at the point, its not like he is robbing anyone for that starting spot. He deserves it just like they do. Just my two cents….Nice blog by the way, its my first time visiting.

  20. Dannie, that’s fair. I wouldn’t fight to the death about RJ being one of the 12 best players in the East. I probably would fight to the death about RJ deserving it over half-man, no heart VC, though. :)

  21. 9nine9 – You wouldn’t get an argument from me about that one. VC just doesn’t bring it enough anymore for me. He lost that edge he used to have somewhere between Toronto and New Jersey .

  22. Real BBall fan, I agree with your reply. This is the 2nd time EVER Kobe has really opened up to playing the team game (the 1st time would be the first half of last season before he went on his scoring barage…he looked to pass first and the Lakers were rolling until Odom got hurt). While his game is obviously the best in the L, let’s not jump all over his sack quite yet.

    Playoff wise, out of the guys that have been one man offensive juggernauts on teams (Kobe’s Lakers, AI’s Sixers, Pierce’s Celtics, T-Mac’s Magic, Melo’s pre AI Nuggets)…AI by FAR has the lead in that category. Lets not forget AI took our young Sixers squad to TWO 2nd round playoffs before the 01 champ season, and another 2nd round with the underated squad in 03 with K. Van Horn and DC.

    If the Nuggets were healthy, then I’d probably be a lot more critical of AI then I am. But…they aren’t. People need to understand that the Nuggets team is built to rely on not AI, not Melo, but the PF position. The PF position is absolutely essential to this team possibly succeeded. Why? Because Melo plays no D, and AI only plays gamble defense, you need to have a 2nd defender in the paint to tag team with Camby in order for the Nuggets to be an effective defensive unit. With Nene constantly hobbled, K-Mart still getting his feet wet again from the microfracture surgery, and bucket and pale Najera injured as well, that is a HUGE gaping hole. The Nuggets could be a GREAT team with a defensive tag team of Camby-Nene/K-Mart…and an offensive tag team of AI/Melo. But, injuries have prevented that.

    There is also the fact that, IMO, Melo is the most talented player in the league, WITH a high bball IQ, that regularly squanders his talent to settle for jumpshots, ball hog it, and have horrible decision making. I’ve watched a lot of Nuggets games…to me the blame lies more on Melo then AI. Melo disrupts his own offense and stops the fluidity and chemistry the team could have on O.

  23. Not only did VC lose his edge somewhere between Toronto and New Jersey, but he lost whatever fraction he still had when he signed the ridiculous contract the Nets offered while they were bidding against, oh, THEMSELVES.

    Glad to see Caron Butler and Chris Bosh getting deserved props.

  24. WTF!!! No T-Mac, this game is gonna suck balls!!!!!

  25. badasspimpdaddy – Your joking right? T-Mac is having the worst season of his career easily. He has only played in 35 of 50 games thus far, is shooting 43.6% from the field, 69% from the line (worst of his career), 5rpg (worst of his career when playing 30mpg), 21.7ppg (2nd worst of his career when playing 30mpg and worst in the last 8 seasons).

    I doubt he makes another All-Star team unless he gets voted in by the 1.3 billion people in China, like he did last year when Melo was clearly the better choice to start!

  26. The all star game was alright, but lacked some excitement, i think it would have been better with some dunks from vince n tracy, not 2 mention kobe who didnt play, put those three in the game and u got an exciting all star game

  27. I agree Jeffro. Then again, IMO the All Star Game usually really isn’t that great, and is more of a media hype machine then something that fun to watch. I think the way to go about it is to only watch the 2nd half…that way you get a nice half of flashy dunks/passes, while they are playing harder.

    I’d say the 4th quarter was great though…and man, King James threw down one NASTY a** dunk on basically the entire Western Conference team. Great to see Ray shoot the lights out too after only being picked as a replacement.

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