Tuesday, January 11, 2011

All Star Teams According to Fats

Since it is now 2011 and there hasn't been a new post all year (and well into last year) I figured I'd step up and finally get one posted. I'm not a huge Carmelo fan, so I'll leave it up to someone else to deal with that whole situation. What I do want to talk about is the All Star Game. I'm still not sure of how I feel with the format of the game and the choosing of players (take the example of Yao Ming leading for the West Center position even though he isn't playing), but it's hard to alter it. Sometimes I think it works ok, but then there are times when players make it in only because of their name, and now how they are doing that year. I'm interested in how the NHL All Star Game will turn out with the use of captains choosing their teams. But since nothing has been changed and I don't really know how to change it, I thought I would go about picking my own All Star Teams.

This was actually a harder process than I thought it would be, and for different reasons. I thought it would be hard because I would have to exclude a lot of deserving players, but other than one case (see below), I found it to be the opposite. I had to look pretty hard to fill out my East roster, and I'm still not 100% happy with it. But since I have to have 12 players, I manned up and picked them. I realize that my decisions are not compeltely based on the best methods, as I am unable to spend too much time living and breathing the NBA, but I tried to be as fair as I could. I made my picks on a combination of how the player was performing this year, and how their teams were doing. Some picks were having great years for terrible teams, while other players were doing alright but were making significant contributions to a winning team. Some of the picks were automatic, while others will, I'm sure, be strongly denounced by the Pads' readers. But I guess that is what I'm trying to do: make a forum for a debate on who should and should not be included on the All Star Teams. So here we go.


G - Kobe Bryant
G - Russell Westbrook
F - Dirk Nowitzki
F - Kevin Durant
C - Pau Gasol (this is in replace of Yao Ming, as all the other Centers in the West suck)

Bench (in no order)
1) Tim Duncan
2) Carmelo Anthony
3) Kevin Love
4) Zach Randolph
5) Blake Griffin
6) Steve Nash
7) Deron Williams

The main trouble I had with this team was the exclusion of Chris Paul. I was going to put him in instead of Nash, but Nash is having another great statistical year, and without him the Suns would probably be the worst team in the West. Yes the Hornets are doing better than the Suns in the standings, but I think I would still rather have Nash than Paul as my point guard.

I kind of copied my thinking from another NBA.com article that Duncan could be there in the place of any other Center. That way there would be room for the 3 guys on the crappy teams who are having really good years (Love, Randolph and Griffin). I guess you could argue that Paul could take Griffin's place, but wouldn't the game be so much more fun if Griffin was throwing down 3 monsterous dunks per minute of playing time he got? I would say so.

Finally, I realize that my starting 5 will never happen, as no matter how good a year Dirk is having, he'll never be voted as a starter, and Westbrook will probably be lucky to even make the team, but I feel these are the 5 most deserving guys out there. Again, Gasol is kind of a F/C like Duncan, but I feel that works.


G - Derrick Rose
G - Rajon Rondo
F - LeBron James
F - Amar'e Stoudemire
C - Dwight Howard

Bench (in no order)
1) Dwayne Wade
2) Paul Pierce
3) Andrew Bogut
4) Carlos Boozer
5) Kevin Garnett
6) Chris Bosh
7) Ray Allen

For the East team, I actually found choosing the starters a lot simpler than the West, but filling out the bench players really gave me a hard time. There were a few guys who I just really weren't sure of how they were doing this year (like Joe Johnson, Danny Granger and Devin Harris) and so I kind of went with who was doing pretty good on a really good team (other than the Bogut pick, which was the complete opposite!). I again think that the starters won't look like this because of popularity, but I felt that my starters were the ones who really deserved it. All 5 of those guys could compete for the MVP this year, and so how can you keep them off the list?

I know that Garnett and Allen are kind of old bones, but when I watch them playing with the Celtics, I can tell how much they really mean to that team. This is kind of a most valuable player approach to the All Star reserves, but why shouldn't two future hall of famers make the team? Bosh was also a difficult pick, as I knew that he was really struggling to fit in on the Heat team early on in the season. I looked up his numbers, however, and although his stats are a little down from his career stats, he is still having a good year.

So there you have it. These are my All Star Teams. I think they would put on a pretty good show and make for a really good game. If I had to pick the winner, I would probably say the East would win because of their experience and their stronger starting 5, but the West would at least have a few highlight dunks from Griffin!


  1. I'm glad somebody posted something on this because I've been thinking about this alot lately. I love all star time, even though it's not a true indication of the best players in the league (the all-NBA teams are better), but all star teams are cool and alot less predictable.
    It is also cause for a great debate. When I first read your post, fats, I thought I agreed with most of your picks. However, the more I thought about it I actually disagree with alot. Which is why this is a fun post to comment on. So here's what I would change:
    in the west, replace Duncan with Ginobili. Yes Duncan is a legend, I really think that ginobili is the reason for the spurs success this year, plus is 14 pts and 9 rebounds a game all star material?
    Also in the west, if anyone gets injured, Monta Ellis has to be the fill in. He's exciting and he's having an amazing year. I agree that Paul is the odd man out but after ellis if there are two injuries Paul has to be that replacement.
    I also think Griffin HAS to be in the all star game. He is probably the number 1 best power forward in the game right now. And since I've walked past him in person, at disneyland, on my honeymoon, he is automatically awesome.

    In the East, I would replace Bogut and Allen with Joe Johnson and Bargnani. Allen is crucial to the celtics' team but I don't think the celtics should have 4 allstars while the hawks' best player is excluded (they are only 3 games behind the celtics). Bargnani vs Bogut is an interesting argument. Points vs rebounds. Bogut averages about 6 more reboundds a game than bargs which means 6 extra possesions a game, assuming the team shoots 50%, you could average 6 more points to bogut's points average. That's 19.3 pts/gm, compared to bargnani's 21 pts/gm. Pretty equal. Bogut has more blks, but bargs has a WAY better FT%, all other stats are pretty equal. So since bargs plays for the raptors, naturally I would choose him over Bogut.
    THis turned out to be a far longer comment than I wanted to but this is a fun thing to talk about. It will be exciting to see what actually happens and see what everyone else things should happen.

  2. I was thinking last night that Ginobili was probably the only person I really forgot who really deserved to be on the team. I still think that perhaps Duncan should be on the team, mostly because he would qualify as the F/C while Ginobili wouldn't. I also happen to hate Ginobili, so that might have something to do with it.

    As for Allen, he was the one that I kind of just stuck on the team. I debated between him and Johnson, but picked Allen because Joe's numbers don't really represent the kind of contract that he sighned over the summer. He seems to be underperforming a little bit. But I also didn't really think of there being 4 Celtics on the team, so I might go with Johnson instead. As for Bargs vs Bogut I tend to value a lot more rebounds over a few more points per game. I think there is a small chance that Bargs could make it, but I'd still pick Bogut over him.

  3. Hey everyone. Sorry it has taken me forever to comment on here. And it's been even longer since I wrote anything for the pads. I think if we actually want to keep this thing alive and keep it interesting we should make some sort of goal. like we should each be put in charge of writing an article a certain week, or something like that. I'd still love to see the Pads spread into something cooler than it is. I'm going to regenerate my efforts and be more active on here. I had something awesome underway that was going to knock everyone's socks off, but it hasn't panned out yet. It still might so I won't give it away yet. I still like dreaming about the Pads' possibilities. I'd love to run into someone I don't know wearing a Patrick Ewing's Knee Pads t-shirt someday.
    But anyway, as for the topic of this article, I don't really have a lot to say. That's why I've been absent for so long. I've tried to come up with something useful to say, but it hasn't been working. I agree with both Fats and Miller Regent to some extent. I don't think Bargnani should be an all-star. And I'm betting Miller probably doesn't think so anymore either. The only thing he can do is score, but lately he hasn't really been able to do that, so he's been pretty useless. So I think Bogut deserves it more.
    I have a weird relationship with the all star game. I feel like I love it, but I just realized that I don't think I've even watched it for the last few years. Back before I really had a favorite team, I loved the all star game because it let me watch all my favorite players. I still remember watching the 1997 game over and over (we had it on tape). It used to be my favorite thing. And there have been some good ones recently, but sometimes I just don't care about it, cus I couldn't care less who wins. That's sort of the point I'm at as a fan of sports these days. I can watch anything as long as I care who wins. That's why hockey has even become somewhat interesting for me lately. I picked the Canadiens a few seasons ago, and I'm starting to actually care about the team. The NBA is exciting for me now because I'm so invested with the Raptors. I know they're terrible, but I'm so connected to them that when I watch their games, every basket matters as I hope they can upset whoever they're playing.
    I'm kind of rambling, but my point is that individual players are less interesting to me than they used to be. I'm sure that will change sometime, but for that reason I'm having a really hard time getting interested in the all star game this year. Don't get me wrong, I love the players. I've watched almost every raptors game this year, and it's been great to see almost every other team play. But at this point in my life the team is more important to me than the players. That has shifted and i'm sure it will shift again. I wish I cared more about players this year - it would save me some raptors-induced heartache. But alas, I'm stuck with them.

  4. Considering Bill Simmons is my NBA Bible (almost everything he writes/speaks becomes truth after he persuades me to agree with him), you did a decent job.

    First the West. Other than the differences between starters/reserves which you have no control over, he gave the nod to Paul over Nash. Also, Paul DID get voted in as a starter. The other difference was Ginobili instead of Randolph.

    And the East. He dropped Boozer and Bogut and picked up Al Horford and Raymond Felton.

    So, by the B.S. standard, you went 20 for 24 or 83%. Now's let's see how the 30 coaches measure up to the standard...

  5. Ha ha that's a pretty good stat for the B.S. Standard. Miller persuaded me that Ginobili was a good pick, and I would have put him in over Randolph and Bill reminded me about Horford and I would choose him over Bogut. I think that Paul/Nash pick was a tough one, but I'd still stick with Nash. The Felton one I don't really agree with. I think he's good, but he's not all star material. Amare'e is the reason the Knicks are good again. I'd put Boozer in over Felton any day. So I guess all in all I did pretty good!

  6. For the record, the NBA went 23 for 24, or 96%, by the B.S. standard. In other words, Bill Simmons knows (almost) all.