Another season of NBA All-Star Game selection is upon us and surprise surprise, San Antonio Spurs fans have a bone to pick with some of the selections. We’re not quite as mad as Portland fans but give it some time and we just might get there.
The starters for the All-Star Game were released earlier this week and unsurprisingly there were no Spurs among the Western Conference group. That’s to be expected, but there could be a greater snub coming San Antonio’s way.
There have been more than a few respected basketball writers who have left DeMar DeRozan off of their reserve ballots for the All-Star Game as well. Now I know picking who you put on your ballot is an inherently personal decision and it’s not an easy one in the best of years, especially not this year when so many players are playing at a high level, but DeRozan deserves to be a part of the All-Star festivities this year and it’s plainly wrong to leave him off the ballot.
The Ringer writers are wrong for the San Antonio Spurs star off their ballots
Two of the writers for The Ringer, Dan Devine and Kevin O’Connor, both have media votes for the All-Star Game. And both of them wrongly left DeRozan off of their lists. You can find Devine’s full article here and read O’Connor’s rationale here.
Devine gave his final reserve spot to Chris Paul and O’Connor left DeRozan off of his ballot in favor of Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Paul. In both cases, it was more about the merits of the players they selected more than it was DeRozan not being deserving enough.
Both writers pointed to DeRozan’s pristine assist to turnover ratio – he’s dishing out 6.9 assists per night, a nice number, while only turning the ball over 1.6 times per game – as well as his impressive efficiency and late-game heroics as reasons why he should be considered but ultimately it wasn’t enough.
I don’t mind the selection of Paul much but putting SGA in over DeRozan just seems wrong. SGA is having a good season sure, but the Thunder are second to last in the West. In years past, we’ve seen great players on bad teams left out of the All-Star Game (see: Bradley Beal) and while I don’t necessarily think a great player should be left off the ballot because his teams isn’t winning, it’s frustrating to see that practice applied with such inconsistency.
DeRozan could’ve easily been an All-Star last year and his omission from that contest was probably tied to the Spurs’ low position in the conference standings at the time. Now the Spurs are sitting 6th in the West and he’s not getting the recognition he deserves. It’s just wrong.
I don’t think DeRozan is going to be too upset about not making the All-Star Game if that’s how things shake out. Most players seem to not want the game to happen and would prefer to spend time with their families rather than take part in a game that doesn’t have the flair of year’s past. He might not make the team but let’s be clear about one thing – DeMar DeRozan deserves to be an All-Star.