Who Should Start the NBA All-Star Game? (East)

We’ve all seen the results from the fan voting thus far and unfortunately it is more about popularity than it is about the displays on the basketball court. If the fans had their way Zaza Pachulia would be the starting centre for the Western Conference, a player averaging 5.6ppg and 5.8rpg.

Going by the fan votes, released for the second time last week, here are the starters (if the fan vote was all that was happening) –

Eastern Conference

LeBron James (1,066,147 votes), Kyrie Irving (971,362), Giannis Antetokounmpo (963,110), Kevin Love (473,328) and Dwyane Wade (514,866)

Western Conference

Stephen Curry (990,390 votes), Kevin Durant (987,479), James Harden (961,685), Russell Westbrook (899,024) and Zaza Pachulia (823, 376)

Now, here’s who I believe should be given the accolade of All-Star starters for the Eastern Conference (Western Conference to follow) and why –

Backcourt:

There are a number of deserving players in these two positions but neither Kyrie Irving or Dwyane Wade would be my top choices to fill them.

DeMar DeRozan has been having an unreal season up in Toronto, currently averaging 28.2ppg, 5.4rpg, 3.7apg and 1.3spg.
He has scored 30 or more points in 19 of the Raptors 39 games, including topping 40pts on three occasions. DeRozan was also the main reason why the Raptors got off to such a good start to the season, he led the league in scoring during the first month and carried the team while Kyle Lowry found his footing in the new season.

Joining DeRozan could be any of John Wall from the Washington Wizards, his teammate Kyle Lowry or, my pick, Isaiah Thomas of the Boston Celtics.

Thomas has been on an absolute tear this season and is averaging 28.2ppg, 2.7rpg, 6.2apg and 0.8spg.
He has scored 30 or more points 11 times this season so far, including a massive 52pt outburst against the Miami Heat. He has done some impressive work in the fourth quarter and clutch situations, he averages about https://www.acheterviagrafr24.com/viagra-pharmacie/ 10ppg in the fourth quarter alone and that is the most for any player since 1996 (NBAstats). That includes a franchise record 29pts in a fourth quarter this season.

Frontcourt:

Again, a number of deserving players but this decision is easier to make than the backcourt starters.

A fairly obvious choice this one, LeBron James will be starting the All Star Game and with averages of 25.8ppg, 7.8rpg, 8.3apg and 1.5spg, rightly so. There’s not really any explanation required here, everyone knows who James is and what he does on the court.

Joining him will be Giannis Antetokounmpo from the Milwaukee Bucks, who also has to be a leading contender for the Most Improved Player award come seasons end. He is currently averaging 23.2ppg, 8.7rpg, 5.6apg, 2bpg and 1.8spg – all up on the previous seasons averages by a fair margin. He’s one of the best players to watch, he can handle the ball like a guard but he’s got the height and length of a centre.

Speaking of centre, I’m of the belief that the traditional five positions of basketball should still be recognised in the All-Star starting lineups and a player who plays the centre position should be included. For that reason, Jimmy Butler is unlucky to miss out in my starting lineup but that means that Joel Embiid makes his All Star debut.

With his minutes limited each night so far, he’s averaging only 25.2mpg, he has been dominating the league with averages of 19.6ppg, 7.6rpg, 2apg, 0.8spg and 2.3bpg. He’s also been surprisingly effective from the three point line (34.5%) and has been able to show some quick moves to get by his defender. More importantly he is bringing life back to the Philadelphia 76ers and proving to be very entertaining and a real showman –


So my Eastern Conference starting lineup – G: Isaiah Thomas, G: DeMar DeRozan, F: LeBron James, F: Giannis Antetokounmpo and C: Joel Embiid.