The NBA has officially announced which players will participate in the 2020 All-Star Game in Chicago, on February 14. After fans made their votes for the starters, the players and coaches selected the additional seven players in each Conference. The layout looks like this;
East Starters: Giannis Antetokounmpo (captain), Joel Embiid, Pascal Siakam, Kemba Walker, Trae Young.
East Reserves: Jimmy Butler, Ben Simmons, Kyle Lowry, Khris Middleton, Domantas Sabonis, Jayson Tatum, Bam Adebayo.
West Starters: LeBron James (captain), Anthony Davis, Luka Doncic, James Harden, Kawhi Leonard.
West Reserves: Nikola Jokic, Damian Lillard, Donovan Mitchell, Rudy Gobert, Chris Paul, Brandon Ingram, Russell Westbrook.
Despite the success of the players who made the cut, there have been some notable omissions to the All-Star selections.
Devin Booker has been trending towards All-Star status for the last few seasons in terms of individual play, but his teams’ records have kept him out of these conversations. This year Phoenix is a new team, with 20 wins heading into February, compared to just 19 total last season. As a result, Booker is thriving in a new offense and is averaging career highs with 27 points (ninth in the league) on 51 percent shooting and over six and a half assists. Booker’s numbers rival those of players that did make the All-Star roster, such as Brandon Ingram and Trae Young, who are both on teams with worse records than the Suns.
Devin Booker has been an All-Star level talent for years and should have been recognized for that this season. If there’s a Western Conference replacement needed, don’t be surprised if Booker’s name is called to fill the spot.
The Indiana Pacers are one of six teams that have established themselves as near locks to make the playoffs in the Eastern Conference. Of those six teams, Indiana is the only one with just one All-Star, Domantas Sabonis. So how have the Pacers kept afloat without the services of their best player, Victor Oladipo? The answer is Malcolm Brogdon. Brogdon has been a huge part of Indiana’s success and is averaging nearly 17 points and over seven assists. The fourth-year guard is the only player averaging at least 16 points and seven assists on a winning team that did not make the All-Star game this year.
Brogdon’s efficiency and impact on winning as Indiana’s primary ball-handler for the first half of the season has put the Pacers well into the Eastern Conference playoffs and should have been considered to represent them in Chicago.
Brad Beal was probably omitted from the All-Star game due to his lack of team success, but the Wizards are just two slots behind the Magic for the eighth seed in the playoffs. Meanwhile, Beal is putting up career highs with 28.8 points (fifth in the NBA) and 6.3 assists. If Beal maintains his pace, he will tie World B. Free’s 1979 record for the highest scoring average in a season where a player did not make the All-Star team.
What makes Beals situation strange is most of his numbers are up from last season, when he was an All-Star with similar team success. Beal will most likely be the first player chosen out of the East in the event a replacement is needed.
It should be noted that Kyrie Irving, Paul George and Karl Anthony Towns, are all performing at All-Star levels. All three would all be locks on this list had they not missed so much time due to injuries.
Stats Credited to:
“From Our Haus to Yours”