NBA Lockout: LeBron James and the kingdom ruled by knights

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source: Getty Images

In 1964, the players for the NBA All-Star Game refused to leave the locker room at the famed Boston Gardens. The game was going to be televised, a huge step forward for the league, and the players knew this was their best chance at getting the owners by their tender parts. They refused to walk onto the floor unless the league recognized their union and promised a pension plan, paving the way for the players to finally start having some say in how the league they drove was run.

That was the first spark. Bill Russell, as documented in Aram Goudsouzian’s “King of the Court: Bill Russell and the basketball revolution,” was one of the most adamant in refusing to play. The players eventually played, disaster was averted, but from there on out, the power dynamic has shifted. At the time, the owners’ refused to acknowledge the players’ position and were outraged at the defiance.

Not much has changed.

In 1970, Oscar Robertson, as head of the NBPA, filed an antitrust lawsuit against the NBA in pursuit of blocking the NBA-ABA merger, reforming the draft, and freeing players from being bound to one team. Can you imagine a world where if you were a star drafted by a team, you had no alternative than to stick with that franchise barring a trade? It took six years for the suit to be settled, but in 1976, NBA free agency was born. If Russell and the 1964 All-Stars had shown the owners they had fists and teeth, the Robertson suit was what showed the owners they were prepared to use them.

From the New York Times in 1988:

”What we’re going to do is discuss whether to proceed with our antitrust suit as expeditiously as possible, a work stoppage during the regular season, All-Star Game or playoffs, to cease having the union as being the bargaining agent for the players or a combination of any of the above,” Larry Fleisher, the general counsel of the National Basketball Players Association, said in an interview yesterday.

The players, who are seeking to eliminate the college draft, the right of first refusal and the salary cap, have been without a labor agreement since last June.

Since June, there was a three-and-a-half-month moratorium on player transactions, but that failed to hasten negotiations. The players have filed an antitrust suit in Federal District Court in Newark, and the league has countered with an unfair labor practices suit against the players hoping to bring them back to the bargaining table. There have been nine fruitless bargaining sessions.

via N.B.A. Union Hints at Strike – New York Times.

And in 1999, the NBA instituted its first lockout, killing half a season and destroying the sport’s lingering momentum following the exodus of Jordan’s Bulls, primarily because of the strength of Kevin Garnett and his six-year, $126 million contract.

The point I’m trying to make is that this battle has been going on for a very, very long time.

There’s a common mistake made in regards to these labor disputes, that they are about one thing. They are about money. They are about pride. They are about power. They are about labor strength. They are about employer rights. They are about all of these things, and somewhere running as a vein underneath the black, ashen skin of this decades long standoff is this: they are about the power of the individual player.

In short, the teams want to be the brand, the product, the market, the control. They want the players to be the asset, the employee, the robotic function of the system the team structure creates. You can argue that end point is about money. But it also speaks to ideological divides over whether the young, yes, in most cases black athlete should have the strength and power to determine his or her own basketball destiny.

And that’s where we reach this new group of superstars, smack dab in the middle of the whirlwind.

There were rumors as far back as 2008 that LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh had a plan to play together. Particularly Wade and James were connected, each finding a friendship in one another born of stardom. But the “brat pack” or whatever name you want to identify them as goes so much further than those two. One of James’ best friends is Chris Paul. They are thick as thieves, those two plus Paul’s brother. Carmelo Anthony? Also very much part of the group. These players are the actualization of years of player empowerment. It’s part of what makes people so repulsed by them, the attitude is “This game is ours, and we’ll run it as we see fit.” That doesn’t go over well with a team-centric American spirit that believes in truth, justice, and the American role player’s way. We idolize above-average defenders who can’t score while scorning gunners. And while these players are complete (ok, that might be a bit extreme with Carmelo, but roll with it), they are still icons of individual dominance.

The older players have taken center stage in this current conflict, most notably Kobe Bryant, Paul Pierce, and, I’ll admit it, scapegoat Kevin Garnett with their little exhibition in front of the owners, according to reports. I’ve blasted and mocked Garnett for his antics. They were unproductive and unprofessional, if reports are to believed. But they’re also not anything most players wouldn’t do or wouldn’t like to do. While I think lionizing Garnett under some obscenely veiled “he’s not a hero” (like John McClain wasn’t a hero, is the subtext there) is a bit much, it doesn’t alter the fact that Garnett just had the guts to say what most players want to but can’t because they don’t have the power. It was an exhibition of power.

Just like “The Decision.”

I’ve made the argument in the past that there’s more of a bloodline between Garnett and James through their responses to adversity and exertion of their power in finding better places to contend. But what’s revealing in this context is that James and Garnett are both champions of the power of a player, just through different means. Garnett yells and spits and screams and broods, that’s how he found his way out of Minnesota. Never turning his back on the fans or even the team, but clawing at the cage and disturbing the others enough to where the Wolves were forced to send him elsewhere. James, on the other hand, isn’t as dramatic or unrestrained, he’s the opposite, preferring to preen and smile while popping on a pair of designer shades. The Russell-Wilt comparison isn’t insane here, if you’re just talking about approach. (It should be noted here that Wilt was also the first player, reportedly, to want to end the boycott at the ’64 All-Star Game, so that, along with pretty much everything about both players’ games, makes this comparison chemically unstable. Again, just go with it, I’m rolling.)

Consider this from the Arizona Republic Saturday:

(Note: Forgive the extensive blockquote, please go read the entire article which is quite good, if only for food for thought, even if it’s a bit uneven on the pro-owner side.)

Behind the scenes, during the 2008 Olympics, James’ status among fellow players was impossible to miss. While Kobe Bryant acted like a perfect student around head coach Mike Krzyzewski, James struck a different pose. He wore bulky headphones to most open media sessions, making it clear he was off limits until he chose otherwise.

Once, Jerry Colangelo imported the late Myles Brand to speak to the Olympians. When Brand identified himself as president of the NCAA, James interrupted the speech with a shout from the back of the room.

“Of who?” he said.

“The NCAA,” Brand responded.

“I missed you, man,” he said. “My bad.”

The joke was inappropriate and yet hysterical. James was pointing out that he didn’t know Brand because he didn’t need college to get where he was going. You could almost hear his teammates bursting with laughter, yet they remained governed by a sense of restraint.

Later, I asked Wade about James’ brand of leadership, and why fellow players seemed to gravitate to him.

“He’ll say anything to anybody at anytime,” Wade said with near reverence.

At times, James might be misguided and tone-deaf. In a recent negotiating session, it was explained to James that the 43 percent of basketball-related income received by owners was not profit, rather a number that came before operating expenses.

According to a source, James replied, “Well, I have expenses, too.”

via NBA players elicit a stern warning as lockout rolls on.

Well, it isn’t quite “I’ve got a family to feed” or “We make a lot of money but we also spend a lot of money,” but had this been public, it would have been right up there on the Family Feud board for “things you can say which will destroy your PR positioning with fans during a labor dispute.”

Nothing better crystallizes the perceived arrogance of LeBron James better than that, or the dichotomy that exists. Many will be quick to point out the widely held belief that the players in fact find James’ arrogance distasteful. But consider the difference between how a player finds an opponent on the floor, or as a teammate, and how they consider him as a leader for their industry, as an example, as a leader for strength. LeBron James took the power fought for by Bill Russell and Oscar Robertson and translated it into the perfect… okay, nearly perfect re-organization of the sport’s DNA. He shifted the balance of power in the NBA over the next six years, even if they don’t win a championship, the path goes through Miami. He showed that a player can enter free agency, and not only go where he wants, but get a sign-and-trade to get the extra year he wants on the deal, and do it alongside two of his best friends.

The quote from James above is also a continuation of what we’ve seen from James and his crew. Chris Paul is on the labor committee, the smartest of all that group, quietly working to do what’s best for the players and control the interests of both his superstar friends, and the majority of the union made up in role players. Dwyane Wade reportedly told David Stern to get his finger out of his face, saying “I’m not your child.” Is there any clearer image of the divide than that? Wade, the friendly, championship-ring-bearing hyper-marketed superstar telling the league’s commissioner to treat him as the power entity he is and not as a burger-flipper taking too long on his lunch break. (Note: I’ve been that burger flipper who took too long on his lunch break. Those jobs suuuuck and it’s one of the reasons I still find the players’ position unpalatable. Burger-flippers work hard, too!)

Wade’s outburst was his Michael Jordan moment, where Jordan laughed off owner Abe Pollin and said if he can’t compete to sell his team. If James is the rod, and Paul the handle, then Wade is the tip of the spear.

When Carmelo Anthony was traded to the New York Knicks, I described it as an example of the new NBA player power structure. Anthony, again, close friend of Wade and James, manipulated his way not only out of Denver, where he didn’t want to be, but to the Knicks, where he specifically wanted to go. Lots of players have forced their way into a trade over the years. Tons. But few have been able to point to the NBA map, to a team already laden with salary and a superstar, with few assets to return (but Isiah Thomas still found a way to give up too much!), and say “There. That’s where you’ll trade me.”

The shortening of players’ contracts, the extreme luxury tax penalties, the Bird rights reforms, the pursuit of the elimination of the sign-and-trade, where do you think these things come from on the owners’ part? They’re trying to stabilize their economic model, that’s certain. But to do so, they know they have to regain power. They can’t sit by and watch a league that became driven by superstars starting with Magic and Bird, the only way the league survived, much less flourished, be controlled by those superstars. It’s fine to market those stars, to demand they smile for promos, do all the appearances, act and dress the way the owners need them to in order to make the league more popular. But those same players can’t control what happens in the league. That has to be the owners’ prerogative, in their minds.

Owners: “We have the money, we should have the power.”

Players: “We are the brand, and we will take what is rightfully ours.”

This has been going on since before 1964. From All-Star boycotts to antitrust suits to threats and Garnett all the way to “The Decision” and the looming force of Dwight Howard threatening to once again render the league’s landscape entirely reformed in the summer of 2012, this is about money, it’s about economics, it’s about labor law, it’s certainly about ego (past: Dan Gilbert, and future: the Orlando Magic). But it’s also about the power of the man who owns the floor, the ball, the court, the logo (but not the arena!) vs. the man who controls the hand that dribbles, passes, defends, and scores.

When you look at the history of this conflict, from ’64 all the way to the Decision and beyond, and you consider the racial implications which cannot be avoided in this context, the bitterness over what is essentially 2 percentage points, and quickly becoming less money than will be lost in a further-prolonged lockout becomes more understandable. It’s absurd, and it’s frustrating, and it’s disappointing, all at the same time. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t have seen it coming.

It’s the modern NBA mythological history. The owners in search of their gold, and the players in search of their destiny.

Complete NBA All-Star starter voting, from LeBron James to Mindaugas Kuzminskas

AP Photo/Andres Kudacki
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Remember Mindaugas Kuzminskas? The Knicks waived him early in the season and more than a month before All-Star voting even began.

He still received four fan votes – the most meager total of anyone the NBA counted.

By comparison, LeBron James received a league-high 2,638,294 fan votes (which made him a captain for the new draft), all 99 media votes and 220 player votes (curiously, fewer than Giannis Antetokounmpo).

You can dig through totals in each category for LeBron, Kuzminskas and everyone in between.

Each player’s rank in fan, player and media voting is given. Exact totals are in parenthesis. Players are sorted by their “score” – (fan rank * two + player rank + media rank)/four).

Eastern Conference guards

Player Fans Players Media Score
Kyrie Irving, BOS 1 (2,170,833) 1 (181) 1 (96) 1
DeMar DeRozan, TOR 2 (998,999) 2 (105) 2 (89) 2
Victor Oladipo, IND 4 (634,495) 3 (73) 3 (11) 3.5
Ben Simmons, PHI 3 (669,397) 6 (25) 6 (0) 4.5
John Wall, WAS 6 (542,836) 4 (57) 4 (1) 5
Bradley Beal, WAS 9 (269,238) 5 (43) 4 (1) 6.75
Isaiah Thomas, CLE 7 (449,091) 9 (17) 6 (0) 7.25
Kyle Lowry, TOR 8 (322,036) 7 (19) 6 (0) 7.25
Dwyane Wade, CLE 5 (617,271) 15 (6) 6 (0) 7.75
Eric Bledsoe, MIL 12 (124,232) 10 (10) 6 (0) 10
Kemba Walker, CHA 13 (100,632) 8 (18) 6 (0) 10
Jaylen Brown, BOS 10 (205,104) 15 (6) 6 (0) 10.25
Goran Dragic, MIA 15 (63,387) 13 (7) 6 (0) 12.25
Malcolm Brogdon, MIL 17 (39,598) 13 (7) 6 (0) 13.25
Spencer Dinwiddie, BKN 20 (30,782) 12 (8) 6 (0) 14.5
JJ Redick, PHI 19 (32,874) 18 (5) 6 (0) 15.5
Derrick Rose, CLE 11 (146,481) 36 (1) 6 (0) 16
D'Angelo Russell, BKN 18 (38,712) 24 (2) 6 (0) 16.5
Avery Bradley, DET 28 (19,318) 10 (10) 6 (0) 18
JR Smith, CLE 16 (49,454) 36 (1) 6 (0) 18.5
Lance Stephenson, IND 27 (21,254) 21 (3) 6 (0) 20.25
Kris Dunn, CHI 31 (16,981) 15 (6) 6 (0) 20.75
Kyle Korver, CLE 14 (99,576) 53 (0) 6 (0) 21.75
Frank Ntilikina, NYK 23 (28,456) 36 (1) 6 (0) 22
Zach LaVine, CHI 24 (27,614) 36 (1) 6 (0) 22.5
Dennis Schroder, ATL 25 (25,531) 36 (1) 6 (0) 23
Courtney Lee, NYK 26 (22,226) 36 (1) 6 (0) 23.5
T.J. McConnell, PHI 32 (14,657) 24 (2) 6 (0) 23.5
Jeremy Lin, BKN 21 (30,526) 53 (0) 6 (0) 25.25
Terry Rozier, BOS 30 (17,728) 36 (1) 6 (0) 25.5
Marcus Smart, BOS 22 (29,252) 53 (0) 6 (0) 25.75
Ron Baker, NYK 40 (10,238) 24 (2) 6 (0) 27.5
Reggie Jackson, DET 41 (9,937) 24 (2) 6 (0) 28
Darren Collison, IND 45 (7,092) 18 (5) 6 (0) 28.5
Jose Calderon, CLE 29 (19,280) 53 (0) 6 (0) 29.25
Nicolas Batum, CHA 44 (8,803) 24 (2) 6 (0) 29.5
Caris LeVert, BKN 49 (5,623) 20 (4) 6 (0) 31
Matthew Dellavedova, MIL 33 (13,206) 53 (0) 6 (0) 31.25
Marco Belinelli, ATL 34 (12,068) 53 (0) 6 (0) 31.75
Markelle Fultz, PHI 35 (11,551) 53 (0) 6 (0) 32.25
Jerian Grant, CHI 50 (5,412) 24 (2) 6 (0) 32.5
Kadeem Allen, BOS 36 (10,822) 53 (0) 6 (0) 32.75
Arron Afflalo, ORL 37 (10,621) 53 (0) 6 (0) 33.25
Tony Snell, MIL 53 (5,144) 21 (3) 6 (0) 33.25
Dion Waiters, MIA 38 (10,512) 53 (0) 6 (0) 33.75
Wayne Ellington, MIA 47 (6,247) 36 (1) 6 (0) 34
Jarrett Jack, NYK 39 (10,265) 53 (0) 6 (0) 34.25
Justin Holiday, CHI 55 (5,046) 24 (2) 6 (0) 35
Iman Shumpert, CLE 42 (8,894) 53 (0) 6 (0) 35.75
Elfrid Payton, ORL 57 (4,717) 24 (2) 6 (0) 36
Furkan Korkmaz, PHI 43 (8,823) 53 (0) 6 (0) 36.25
Tyler Johnson, MIA 52 (5,205) 36 (1) 6 (0) 36.5
Delon Wright, TOR 46 (6,757) 53 (0) 6 (0) 37.75
Fred VanVleet, TOR 48 (5,660) 53 (0) 6 (0) 38.75
Allen Crabbe, BKN 65 (4,044) 21 (3) 6 (0) 39.25
Cory Joseph, IND 64 (4,185) 24 (2) 6 (0) 39.5
Kent Bazemore, ATL 51 (5,336) 53 (0) 6 (0) 40.25
Mario Hezonja, ORL 61 (4,452) 36 (1) 6 (0) 41
Jeremy Lamb, CHA 54 (5,094) 53 (0) 6 (0) 41.75
Joe Harris, BKN 70 (3,705) 24 (2) 6 (0) 42.5
Tyler Dorsey, ATL 56 (4,754) 53 (0) 6 (0) 42.75
Justin Anderson, PHI 58 (4,655) 53 (0) 6 (0) 43.75
Luke Kennard, DET 67 (3,778) 36 (1) 6 (0) 44
Shane Larkin, BOS 59 (4,545) 53 (0) 6 (0) 44.25
Ryan Arcidiacono, CHI 60 (4,465) 53 (0) 6 (0) 44.75
Malik Monk, CHA 62 (4,432) 53 (0) 6 (0) 45.75
Treveon Graham, CHA 63 (4,227) 53 (0) 6 (0) 46.25
Langston Galloway, DET 74 (2,772) 36 (1) 6 (0) 47.5
David Nwaba, CHI 80 (2,201) 24 (2) 6 (0) 47.5
Jason Terry, MIL 66 (3,862) 53 (0) 6 (0) 47.75
Tim Frazier, WAS 82 (2,130) 24 (2) 6 (0) 48.5
Jabari Bird, BOS 68 (3,744) 53 (0) 6 (0) 48.75
John Holland, CLE 68 (3,744) 53 (0) 6 (0) 48.75
D.J. Augustin, ORL 71 (3,499) 53 (0) 6 (0) 50.25
Michael Carter-Williams, CHA 72 (3,194) 53 (0) 6 (0) 50.75
Jerryd Bayless, PHI 73 (2,853) 53 (0) 6 (0) 51.25
Cameron Payne, CHI 83 (1,955) 36 (1) 6 (0) 52
DeAndre Liggins, MIL 75 (2,512) 53 (0) 6 (0) 52.25
Jamel Artis, ORL 76 (2,489) 53 (0) 6 (0) 52.75
Ish Smith, DET 77 (2,425) 53 (0) 6 (0) 53.25
Antonio Blakeney, CHI 78 (2,328) 53 (0) 6 (0) 53.75
London Perrantes, CLE 79 (2,282) 53 (0) 6 (0) 54.25
Jodie Meeks, WAS 81 (2,131) 53 (0) 6 (0) 55.25
Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot, PHI 91 (1,722) 36 (1) 6 (0) 56
Sean Kilpatrick, MIL 92 (1,555) 36 (1) 6 (0) 56.5
Isaiah Taylor, ATL 84 (1,931) 53 (0) 6 (0) 56.75
Damyean Dotson, NYK 85 (1,929) 53 (0) 6 (0) 57.25
Lorenzo Brown, TOR 86 (1,906) 53 (0) 6 (0) 57.75
Malcolm Delaney, ATL 87 (1,850) 53 (0) 6 (0) 58.25
Sterling Brown, MIL 88 (1,817) 53 (0) 6 (0) 58.75
Joe Young, IND 89 (1,790) 53 (0) 6 (0) 59.25
Glenn Robinson III, IND 90 (1,775) 53 (0) 6 (0) 59.75
Derrick Jones Jr., MIA 101 (1,115) 36 (1) 6 (0) 61
Rashad Vaughn, MIL 93 (1,544) 53 (0) 6 (0) 61.25
Nik Stauskas, BKN 94 (1,493) 53 (0) 6 (0) 61.75
Dwight Buycks, DET 95 (1,286) 53 (0) 6 (0) 62.25
Marcus Paige, CHA 96 (1,262) 53 (0) 6 (0) 62.75
Sheldon Mac, WAS 97 (1,234) 53 (0) 6 (0) 63.25
Josh Magette, ATL 98 (1,203) 53 (0) 6 (0) 63.75
Derrick Walton Jr., MIA 107 (862) 36 (1) 6 (0) 64
Luis Montero, DET 99 (1,195) 53 (0) 6 (0) 64.25
Terrence Ross, ORL 100 (1,177) 53 (0) 6 (0) 64.75
Isaiah Whitehead, BKN 102 (1,091) 53 (0) 6 (0) 65.75
Quincy Pondexter, CHI 103 (1,053) 53 (0) 6 (0) 66.25
Shelvin Mack, ORL 104 (1,050) 53 (0) 6 (0) 66.75
Ramon Sessions 105 (1,035) 53 (0) 6 (0) 67.25
Rodney McGruder, MIA 106 (926) 53 (0) 6 (0) 67.75
Gary Payton II, LAL 108 (834) 53 (0) 6 (0) 68.75
James Young, PHI 109 (791) 53 (0) 6 (0) 69.25
Damien Wilkins, IND 110 (790) 53 (0) 6 (0) 69.75
Milton Doyle, BKN 111 (652) 53 (0) 6 (0) 70.25
Jacob Pullen, PHI 112 (548) 53 (0) 6 (0) 70.75
Julyan Stone, CHA 113 (453) 53 (0) 6 (0) 71.25
Edmond Sumner, IND 114 (444) 53 (0) 6 (0) 71.75
Xavier Munford, MIL 115 (427) 53 (0) 6 (0) 72.25
Trey Burke, NYK 116 (401) 53 (0) 6 (0) 72.75
Matt Williams Jr. 117 (207) 53 (0) 6 (0) 73.25
Yakuba Ouattara 118 (195) 53 (0) 6 (0) 73.75
Kay Felder, DET 119 (185) 53 (0) 6 (0) 74.25
Reggie Hearn – DET 120 (108) 53 (0) 6 (0) 74.75

Eastern Conference frontcourt

Player Fans Players Media Score
LeBron James, CLE 1 (2,638,294) 2 (220) 1 (99) 1.25
Giannis Antetokounmpo, MIL 2 (2,530,211) 1 (226) 1 (99) 1.5
Joel Embiid, PHI 3 (1,285,587) 4 (94) 3 (66) 3.25
Kristaps Porzingis, NYK 4 (1,116,769) 3 (100) 4 (14) 3.75
Kevin Love, CLE 5 (771,929) 6 (31) 7 (2) 5.75
Al Horford, BOS 7 (384,936) 8 (18) 5 (13) 6.75
Andre Drummond, DET 9 (220,736) 5 (38) 6 (4) 7.25
Jayson Tatum, BOS 6 (422,620) 12 (13) 8 (0) 8
Enes Kanter, NYK 8 (294,926) 9 (17) 8 (0) 8.25
Dwight Howard, CHA 10 (186,844) 13 (10) 8 (0) 10.25
Khris Middleton, MIL 12 (109,913) 10 (14) 8 (0) 10.5
Serge Ibaka, TOR 11 (117,077) 23 (5) 8 (0) 13.25
Hassan Whiteside, MIA 13 (85,802) 23 (5) 8 (0) 14.25
Aaron Gordon, ORL 14 (82,507) 27 (4) 8 (0) 15.75
Tobias Harris, DET 26 (40,136) 7 (27) 8 (0) 16.75
Myles Turner, IND 22 (52,214) 17 (7) 8 (0) 17.25
Michael Beasley, NYK 18 (62,966) 27 (4) 8 (0) 17.75
Lauri Markkanen, CHI 25 (43,622) 15 (8) 8 (0) 18.25
Jonas Valanciunas, TOR 19 (62,472) 27 (4) 8 (0) 18.25
Otto Porter Jr., WAS 28 (36,302) 10 (14) 8 (0) 18.5
Gordon Hayward, BOS 16 (79,261) 36 (2) 8 (0) 19
Jeff Green, CLE 17 (70,349) 36 (2) 8 (0) 19.5
Dario Saric, PHI 27 (36,736) 17 (7) 8 (0) 19.75
Tim Hardaway Jr., NYK 20 (57,357) 36 (2) 8 (0) 21
Robert Covington, PHI 31 (31,097) 17 (7) 8 (0) 21.75
Cedi Osman, CLE 15 (80,610) 49 (1) 8 (0) 21.75
Marcin Gortat, WAS 35 (23,934) 17 (7) 8 (0) 23.75
Nikola Mirotic, CHI 29 (32,075) 36 (2) 8 (0) 25.5
Tristan Thompson, CLE 23 (48,564) 49 (1) 8 (0) 25.75
Bojan Bogdanovic, IND 41 (16,441) 17 (7) 8 (0) 26.75
Kelly Oubre Jr., WAS 33 (27,847) 34 (3) 8 (0) 27
Bam Adebayo, MIA 36 (21,028) 36 (2) 8 (0) 29
Thon Maker, MIL 38 (19,158) 36 (2) 8 (0) 30
Domantas Sabonis, IND 32 (27,989) 49 (1) 8 (0) 30.25
Jae Crowder, CLE 21 (55,405) 74 (0) 8 (0) 31
OG Anunoby, TOR 24 (44,290) 74 (0) 8 (0) 32.5
Markieff Morris, WAS 56 (9,492) 14 (9) 8 (0) 33.5
Boban Marjanovic, DET 45 (13,377) 36 (2) 8 (0) 33.5
Thaddeus Young, IND 53 (10,960) 22 (6) 8 (0) 34
John Henson, MIL 40 (16,459) 49 (1) 8 (0) 34.25
Quincy Acy, BKN 47 (12,948) 36 (2) 8 (0) 34.5
Aron Baynes, BOS 30 (31,523) 74 (0) 8 (0) 35.5
Robin Lopez, CHI 54 (10,517) 27 (4) 8 (0) 35.75
Josh Richardson, MIA 50 (12,167) 36 (2) 8 (0) 36
Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, BKN 61 (8,255) 15 (8) 8 (0) 36.25
Jabari Parker, MIL 46 (13,373) 49 (1) 8 (0) 37.25
Marcus Morris, BOS 34 (25,191) 74 (0) 8 (0) 37.5
Ersan Ilyasova, ATL 37 (20,404) 74 (0) 8 (0) 39
Jarrett Allen, BKN 51 (11,705) 49 (1) 8 (0) 39.75
CJ Miles, TOR 39 (17,766) 74 (0) 8 (0) 40
James Johnson, MIA 66 (7,535) 23 (5) 8 (0) 40.75
Jahlil Okafor, BKN 64 (7,831) 27 (4) 8 (0) 40.75
Willy Hernangomez, NYK 60 (8,439) 36 (2) 8 (0) 41
Norman Powell, TOR 42 (15,432) 74 (0) 8 (0) 41.5
Channing Frye, CLE 43 (14,331) 74 (0) 8 (0) 42
Jakob Poeltl, TOR 44 (13,464) 74 (0) 8 (0) 42.5
DeMarre Carroll, BKN 70 (6,425) 23 (5) 8 (0) 42.75
Kyle O'Quinn, NYK 68 (6,764) 27 (4) 8 (0) 42.75
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, CHA 57 (9,353) 49 (1) 8 (0) 42.75
Doug McDermott, NYK 59 (8,558) 49 (1) 8 (0) 43.75
Nikola Vucevic, ORL 48 (12,734) 74 (0) 8 (0) 44.5
Daniel Theis, BOS 49 (12,290) 74 (0) 8 (0) 45
Jonathon Simmons, ORL 52 (11,665) 74 (0) 8 (0) 46.5
Frank Kaminsky, CHA 67 (6,875) 49 (1) 8 (0) 47.75
Pascal Siakam, TOR 55 (10,131) 74 (0) 8 (0) 48
Evan Fournier, ORL 58 (9,177) 74 (0) 8 (0) 49.5
Bismack Biyombo, ORL 73 (5,841) 49 (1) 8 (0) 50.75
Trevor Booker, PHI 74 (5,828) 49 (1) 8 (0) 51.25
Kelly Olynyk, MIA 62 (8,008) 74 (0) 8 (0) 51.5
Dwayne Bacon, CHA 75 (5,716) 49 (1) 8 (0) 51.75
Bobby Portis, CHI 82 (4,638) 36 (2) 8 (0) 52
Nicolas Brussino 63 (7,945) 74 (0) 8 (0) 52
Ike Anigbogu, IND 76 (5,391) 49 (1) 8 (0) 52.25
Joakim Noah, NYK 65 (7,548) 74 (0) 8 (0) 53
Denzel Valentine, CHI 78 (5,049) 49 (1) 8 (0) 53.25
Al Jefferson, IND 85 (4,147) 36 (2) 8 (0) 53.5
John Collins, ATL 69 (6,509) 74 (0) 8 (0) 55
James Michael McAdoo 83 (4,564) 49 (1) 8 (0) 55.75
Dewayne Dedmon, ATL 71 (6,074) 74 (0) 8 (0) 56
Mike Scott, WAS 72 (6,020) 74 (0) 8 (0) 56.5
Alex Poythress, IND 94 (3,290) 36 (2) 8 (0) 58
TJ Leaf, IND 88 (3,903) 49 (1) 8 (0) 58.25
Bruno Caboclo, TOR 77 (5,071) 74 (0) 8 (0) 59
Semi Ojeleye, BOS 90 (3,673) 49 (1) 8 (0) 59.25
Lucas Nogueira, TOR 79 (4,980) 74 (0) 8 (0) 60
Udonis Haslem, MIA 80 (4,702) 74 (0) 8 (0) 60.5
Cristiano Felicio, CHI 81 (4,693) 74 (0) 8 (0) 61
Taurean Prince, ATL 96 (3,149) 49 (1) 8 (0) 62.25
Luke Babbitt, ATL 84 (4,245) 74 (0) 8 (0) 62.5
Guerschon Yabusele, BOS 86 (4,124) 74 (0) 8 (0) 63.5
Ante Zizic, CLE 87 (3,905) 74 (0) 8 (0) 64
Amir Johnson, PHI 100 (3,068) 49 (1) 8 (0) 64.25
Stanley Johnson, DET 108 (2,695) 34 (3) 8 (0) 64.5
Richaun Holmes, PHI 89 (3,689) 74 (0) 8 (0) 65
AJ Hammons, MIA 91 (3,584) 74 (0) 8 (0) 66
Tyler Zeller, BKN 115 (2,105) 27 (4) 8 (0) 66.25
Lance Thomas, NYK 104 (2,852) 49 (1) 8 (0) 66.25
Tomas Satoransky, WAS 92 (3,423) 74 (0) 8 (0) 66.5
Cody Zeller, CHA 93 (3,332) 74 (0) 8 (0) 67
Abdel Nader, BOS 95 (3,258) 74 (0) 8 (0) 68
Justise Winslow, MIA 97 (3,113) 74 (0) 8 (0) 69
Marreese Speights, ORL 98 (3,110) 74 (0) 8 (0) 69.5
Timofey Mozgov, BKN 99 (3,073) 74 (0) 8 (0) 70
Marvin Williams, CHA 112 (2,393) 49 (1) 8 (0) 70.25
Paul Zipser, CHI 101 (3,020) 74 (0) 8 (0) 71
Anthony Tolliver, DET 114 (2,180) 49 (1) 8 (0) 71.25
DeAndre’ Bembry, ATL 102 (3,000) 74 (0) 8 (0) 71.5
Reggie Bullock, DET 103 (2,864) 74 (0) 8 (0) 72
Isaiah Hicks, NYK 105 (2,720) 74 (0) 8 (0) 73
Tyler Cavanaugh, ATL 118 (1,896) 49 (1) 8 (0) 73.25
Joel Bolomboy, MIL 106 (2,716) 74 (0) 8 (0) 73.5
D.J. Wilson, MIL 107 (2,713) 74 (0) 8 (0) 74
Mirza Teletovic, MIL 109 (2,614) 74 (0) 8 (0) 75
Ian Mahinmi, WAS 110 (2,534) 74 (0) 8 (0) 75.5
Henry Ellenson, DET 111 (2,396) 74 (0) 8 (0) 76
Khem Birch, ORL 113 (2,197) 74 (0) 8 (0) 77
Jonathan Isaac, ORL 116 (2,080) 74 (0) 8 (0) 78.5
Jason Smith, WAS 117 (2,010) 74 (0) 8 (0) 79
Johnny O'Bryant III, CHA 130 (1,109) 49 (1) 8 (0) 79.25
Luke Kornet, NYK 119 (1,840) 74 (0) 8 (0) 80
Miles Plumlee, ATL 120 (1,577) 74 (0) 8 (0) 80.5
Chris McCullough, WAS 121 (1,487) 74 (0) 8 (0) 81
Eric Moreland, DET 134 (630) 49 (1) 8 (0) 81.25
Alfonzo McKinnie, TOR 122 (1,467) 74 (0) 8 (0) 81.5
Mangok Mathiang, CHA 123 (1,268) 74 (0) 8 (0) 82
Jon Leuer, DET 123 (1,268) 74 (0) 8 (0) 82
Okaro White, MIA 125 (1,263) 74 (0) 8 (0) 83
Jordan Mickey, MIA 126 (1,250) 74 (0) 8 (0) 83.5
Devin Robinson, WAS 127 (1,232) 74 (0) 8 (0) 84
Wes Iwundu, ORL 128 (1,211) 74 (0) 8 (0) 84.5
Malcolm Miller, TOR 129 (1,143) 74 (0) 8 (0) 85
Adreian Payne, ORL 131 (873) 74 (0) 8 (0) 86
Jacob Wiley, BKN 132 (794) 74 (0) 8 (0) 86.5
Mike Muscala, ATL 133 (677) 74 (0) 8 (0) 87
Mike Young, WAS 135 (612) 74 (0) 8 (0) 88
Ben Moore, IND 136 (267) 74 (0) 8 (0) 88.5
Andrew White, ATL 137 (104) 74 (0) 8 (0) 89
James Webb III, BKN 138 (56) 74 (0) 8 (0) 89.5
Mindaugas Kuzminskas 139 (4) 74 (0) 8 (0) 90

Western Conference guards

Player Fans Players Media Score
Stephen Curry, GSW 1 (2,379,494) 1 (146) 2 (83) 1.25
James Harden, HOU 3 (1,486,830) 2 (141) 1 (94) 2.25
Russell Westbrook, OKC 4 (1,241,129) 3 (102) 3 (17) 3.5
Manu Ginobili, SAS 2 (1,808,860) 8 (20) 7 (0) 4.75
Klay Thompson, GSW 5 (1,239,768) 9 (17) 5 (1) 6
Chris Paul, HOU 7 (562,428) 7 (21) 5 (1) 6.5
Damian Lillard, POR 8 (439,462) 4 (27) 7 (0) 6.75
Jimmy Butler, MIN 9 (329,435) 6 (22) 4 (2) 7
Devin Booker, PHO 10 (268,041) 4 (27) 7 (0) 7.75
Lonzo Ball, LAL 6 (607,961) 13 (9) 7 (0) 8
Tony Parker, SAS 12 (139,487) 16 (6) 7 (0) 11.75
CJ McCollum, POR 15 (96,818) 10 (12) 7 (0) 11.75
Donovan Mitchell, UTA 13 (139,468) 15 (8) 7 (0) 12
Lou Williams, LAC 17 (70,050) 10 (12) 7 (0) 12.75
Jordan Clarkson, LAL 11 (188,834) 33 (1) 7 (0) 15.5
Eric Gordon, HOU 14 (123,412) 27 (2) 7 (0) 15.5
Andre Roberson, OKC 18 (63,984) 22 (3) 7 (0) 16.25
Vince Carter, SAC 20 (49,215) 22 (3) 7 (0) 17.25
Rajon Rondo, NOP 23 (35,281) 16 (6) 7 (0) 17.25
Patty Mills, SAS 22 (36,836) 27 (2) 7 (0) 19.5
J.J. Barea, DAL 25 (32,164) 22 (3) 7 (0) 19.75
Alex Abrines, OKC 27 (25,921) 20 (4) 7 (0) 20.25
Danny Green, SAS 21 (48,661) 33 (1) 7 (0) 20.5
Tyreke Evans, MEM 33 (16,138) 10 (12) 7 (0) 20.75
Bogdan Bogdanovic, SAC 24 (33,842) 33 (1) 7 (0) 22
Nick Young, GSW 16 (79,650) 52 (0) 7 (0) 22.75
Shaun Livingston, GSW 19 (50,631) 52 (0) 7 (0) 24.25
Ricky Rubio, UTA 32 (16,243) 27 (2) 7 (0) 24.5
Seth Curry, DAL 30 (17,834) 33 (1) 7 (0) 25
Jrue Holiday, NOP 39 (13,508) 16 (6) 7 (0) 25.25
De'Aaron Fox, SAC 31 (17,127) 33 (1) 7 (0) 25.5
Jamal Crawford, MIN 34 (15,414) 27 (2) 7 (0) 25.5
Jamal Murray, DEN 41 (13,391) 13 (9) 7 (0) 25.5
Milos Teodosic, LAC 26 (26,374) 52 (0) 7 (0) 27.75
Patrick McCaw, GSW 28 (21,266) 52 (0) 7 (0) 28.75
Mike Conley, MEM 43 (11,835) 22 (3) 7 (0) 28.75
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, LAL 38 (13,760) 33 (1) 7 (0) 29
Dennis Smith Jr., DAL 29 (21,205) 52 (0) 7 (0) 29.25
Gary Harris, DEN 42 (13,348) 27 (2) 7 (0) 29.5
Jeff Teague, MIN 46 (9,947) 20 (4) 7 (0) 29.75
Gerald Green, HOU 40 (13,500) 33 (1) 7 (0) 30
Rodney Hood, UTA 47 (7,742) 19 (5) 7 (0) 30
Tony Allen, NOP 47 (7,742) 22 (3) 7 (0) 30.75
Dejounte Murray, SAS 35 (15,023) 52 (0) 7 (0) 32.25
Raymond Felton, OKC 36 (14,490) 52 (0) 7 (0) 32.75
Bryn Forbes, SAS 37 (13,878) 52 (0) 7 (0) 33.25
Tyler Ulis, PHO 54 (4,452) 27 (2) 7 (0) 35.5
Tyus Jones, MIN 52 (5,782) 33 (1) 7 (0) 36
Josh Hart, LAL 44 (11,383) 52 (0) 7 (0) 36.75
Terrance Ferguson, OKC 45 (11,378) 52 (0) 7 (0) 37.25
Will Barton, DEN 55 (4,106) 33 (1) 7 (0) 37.5
Austin Rivers, LAC 49 (7,073) 52 (0) 7 (0) 39.25
Brandon Paul, SAS 59 (3,256) 33 (1) 7 (0) 39.5
Quinn Cook, GSW 50 (6,902) 52 (0) 7 (0) 39.75
Patrick Beverley, LAC 51 (6,725) 52 (0) 7 (0) 40.25
Yogi Ferrell, DAL 53 (4,502) 52 (0) 7 (0) 41.25
Buddy Hield, SAC 56 (4,002) 52 (0) 7 (0) 42.75
Wesley Matthews, DAL 66 (2,624) 33 (1) 7 (0) 43
Alex Caruso, LAL 57 (3,698) 52 (0) 7 (0) 43.25
Joe Johnson, UTA 58 (3,363) 52 (0) 7 (0) 43.75
Derrick White, SAS 60 (3,228) 52 (0) 7 (0) 44.75
Wade Baldwin IV, POR 61 (3,056) 52 (0) 7 (0) 45.25
Dante Exum, UTA 62 (2,929) 52 (0) 7 (0) 45.75
Shabazz Napier, POR 63 (2,921) 52 (0) 7 (0) 46.25
Tyler Ennis, LAL 64 (2,883) 52 (0) 7 (0) 46.75
Vander Blue, LAL 65 (2,765) 52 (0) 7 (0) 47.25
George Hill, SAC 75 (2,089) 33 (1) 7 (0) 47.5
Malik Beasley, DEN 67 (2,554) 52 (0) 7 (0) 48.25
Briante Weber, HOU 77 (1,963) 33 (1) 7 (0) 48.5
Marcus Georges-Hunt, MIN 68 (2,505) 52 (0) 7 (0) 48.75
Frank Mason, SAC 69 (2,389) 52 (0) 7 (0) 49.25
E'Twaun Moore, NOP 70 (2,338) 52 (0) 7 (0) 49.75
Alec Burks, UTA 71 (2,300) 52 (0) 7 (0) 50.25
Pat Connaughton, POR 81 (1,775) 33 (1) 7 (0) 50.5
Bobby Brown 72 (2,221) 52 (0) 7 (0) 50.75
Darrun Hilliard, SAS 73 (2,187) 52 (0) 7 (0) 51.25
Daniel Hamilton, OKC 83 (1,727) 33 (1) 7 (0) 51.5
Brandon Knight, PHO 74 (2,127) 52 (0) 7 (0) 51.75
Emmanuel Mudiay, DEN 85 (1,671) 33 (1) 7 (0) 52.5
Evan Turner, POR 76 (1,985) 52 (0) 7 (0) 52.75
Aaron Brooks, MIN 87 (1,613) 33 (1) 7 (0) 53.5
Mario Chalmers, MEM 78 (1,933) 52 (0) 7 (0) 53.75
Isaiah Canaan, PHO 79 (1,855) 52 (0) 7 (0) 54.25
Demetrius Jackson, HOU 80 (1,832) 52 (0) 7 (0) 54.75
Sindarius Thornwell, LAC 90 (1,354) 33 (1) 7 (0) 55
Raul Neto, UTA 82 (1,742) 52 (0) 7 (0) 55.75
Troy Daniels, PHO 84 (1,694) 52 (0) 7 (0) 56.75
Jawun Evans, LAC 86 (1,622) 52 (0) 7 (0) 57.75
PJ Dozier, OKC 88 (1,610) 52 (0) 7 (0) 58.75
C.J. Williams, LAC 89 (1,522) 52 (0) 7 (0) 59.25
Devin Harris, DAL 91 (1,352) 52 (0) 7 (0) 60.25
Shabazz Muhammad, MIN 92 (1,303) 52 (0) 7 (0) 60.75
Ian Clark, NOP 93 (1,266) 52 (0) 7 (0) 61.25
Frank Jackson, NOP 94 (1,144) 52 (0) 7 (0) 61.75
Kobi Simmons, MEM 95 (1,055) 52 (0) 7 (0) 62.25
Andrew Harrison, MEM 96 (972) 52 (0) 7 (0) 62.75
Wayne Selden, MEM 106 (581) 33 (1) 7 (0) 63
Mike James, NOP 97 (942) 52 (0) 7 (0) 63.25
Jameer Nelson, NOP 98 (893) 52 (0) 7 (0) 63.75
Torrey Craig, DEN 99 (848) 52 (0) 7 (0) 64.25
Naz Mitrou-Long, UTA 100 (846) 52 (0) 7 (0) 64.75
Tyrone Wallace, LAC 101 (749) 52 (0) 7 (0) 65.25
Ben McLemore, MEM 102 (744) 52 (0) 7 (0) 65.75
Davon Reed, PHO 103 (669) 52 (0) 7 (0) 66.25
Monte Morris, DEN 104 (653) 52 (0) 7 (0) 66.75
Malachi Richardson, SAC 105 (601) 52 (0) 7 (0) 67.25
Garrett Temple, SAC 107 (580) 52 (0) 7 (0) 68.25
CJ Wilcox, POR 108 (529) 52 (0) 7 (0) 68.75
Nate Wolters, UTA 109 (514) 52 (0) 7 (0) 69.25
Charles Cooke, NOP 110 (446) 52 (0) 7 (0) 69.75
RJ Hunter, HOU 111 (133) 52 (0) 7 (0) 70.25
Antonius Cleveland 112 (19) 52 (0) 7 (0) 70.75

Western Conference frontcourt

Player Fans Players Media Score
Kevin Durant, GSW 1 (2,238,406) 1 (204) 1 (98) 1
Anthony Davis, NOP 3 (1,088,230) 2 (150) 2 (73) 2.5
DeMarcus Cousins, NOP 4 (922,269) 3 (114) 4 (34) 3.75
Draymond Green, GSW 2 (1,135,478) 7 (41) 6 (13) 4.25
Paul George, OKC 5 (881,287) 6 (48) 7 (4) 5.75
LaMarcus Aldridge, SAS 8 (578,853) 4 (65) 3 (40) 5.75
Karl-Anthony Towns, MIN 9 (552,376) 5 (58) 4 (34) 6.75
Kawhi Leonard, SAS 6 (741,838) 8 (34) 9 (0) 7.25
Carmelo Anthony, OKC 7 (612,021) 9 (29) 9 (0) 8
Kyle Kuzma, LAL 10 (524,927) 12 (16) 9 (0) 10.25
Steven Adams, OKC 11 (360,822) 10 (27) 9 (0) 10.25
Clint Capela, HOU 15 (175,917) 13 (15) 8 (1) 12.75
Blake Griffin, LAC 14 (194,045) 18 (8) 9 (0) 13.75
Brandon Ingram, LAL 13 (230,653) 22 (5) 9 (0) 14.25
Pau Gasol, SAS 16 (158,330) 17 (9) 9 (0) 14.5
Andrew Wiggins, MIN 17 (138,754) 16 (10) 9 (0) 14.75
DeAndre Jordan, LAC 20 (120,399) 13 (15) 9 (0) 15.5
Nikola Jokic, DEN 22 (114,929) 15 (14) 9 (0) 17
Marc Gasol, MEM 24 (80,251) 11 (18) 9 (0) 17
Jordan Bell, GSW 19 (130,915) 24 (4) 9 (0) 17.75
Zaza Pachulia, GSW 18 (134,204) 29 (3) 9 (0) 18.5
Dirk Nowitzki, DAL 23 (98,794) 19 (7) 9 (0) 18.5
Trevor Ariza, HOU 25 (70,852) 24 (4) 9 (0) 20.75
Rudy Gay, SAS 28 (51,456) 35 (2) 9 (0) 25
Ryan Anderson, HOU 34 (33,494) 24 (4) 9 (0) 25.25
Omri Casspi, GSW 30 (47,561) 35 (2) 9 (0) 26
Jusuf Nurkic, POR 36 (26,211) 24 (4) 9 (0) 26.25
Andre Iguodala, GSW 12 (258,417) 74 (0) 9 (0) 26.75
David West, GSW 26 (66,991) 47 (1) 9 (0) 27
Julius Randle, LAL 29 (48,239) 47 (1) 9 (0) 28.5
Taj Gibson, MIN 44 (15,417) 20 (6) 9 (0) 29.25
Rudy Gobert, UTA 31 (43,741) 47 (1) 9 (0) 29.5
Harrison Barnes, DAL 37 (24,636) 35 (2) 9 (0) 29.5
PJ Tucker, HOU 39 (21,879) 35 (2) 9 (0) 30.5
Joe Ingles, UTA 42 (18,366) 29 (3) 9 (0) 30.5
Zhou Qi, HOU 21 (117,623) 74 (0) 9 (0) 31.25
TJ Warren, PHO 48 (12,473) 20 (6) 9 (0) 31.25
Brook Lopez, LAL 41 (18,907) 35 (2) 9 (0) 31.5
Zach Randolph, SAC 50 (12,280) 22 (5) 9 (0) 32.75
JaVale McGee, GSW 27 (65,755) 74 (0) 9 (0) 34.25
Kosta Koufos, SAC 45 (13,819) 47 (1) 9 (0) 36.5
Al-Farouq Aminu, POR 51 (11,032) 35 (2) 9 (0) 36.5
Cole Aldrich, MIN 54 (8,972) 29 (3) 9 (0) 36.5
Kyle Anderson, SAS 32 (38,335) 74 (0) 9 (0) 36.75
Davis Bertans, SAS 33 (33,674) 74 (0) 9 (0) 37.25
Larry Nance Jr., LAL 35 (33,442) 74 (0) 9 (0) 38.25
Tyson Chandler, PHO 55 (8,573) 35 (2) 9 (0) 38.5
Alexis Ajinca, NOP 56 (8,007) 35 (2) 9 (0) 39
Ed Davis, POR 62 (6,920) 24 (4) 9 (0) 39.25
Nene Hilario, HOU 38 (22,502) 74 (0) 9 (0) 39.75
Nemanja Bjelica, MIN 52 (10,690) 47 (1) 9 (0) 40
Paul Millsap, DEN 53 (10,388) 47 (1) 9 (0) 40.5
Georgios Papagiannis, SAC 40 (20,082) 74 (0) 9 (0) 40.75
Luc Mbah a Moute, HOU 43 (15,856) 74 (0) 9 (0) 42.25
Willie Cauley-Stein, SAC 57 (7,657) 47 (1) 9 (0) 42.5
Josh Jackson, PHO 59 (7,263) 47 (1) 9 (0) 43.5
Jerami Grant, OKC 46 (13,536) 74 (0) 9 (0) 43.75
Derrick Favors, UTA 47 (12,491) 74 (0) 9 (0) 44.25
Omer Asik, NOP 61 (6,996) 47 (1) 9 (0) 44.5
Marquese Chriss, PHO 71 (5,039) 29 (3) 9 (0) 45
Danilo Gallinari, LAC 49 (12,296) 74 (0) 9 (0) 45.25
Joffrey Lauvergne, SAS 70 (5,132) 35 (2) 9 (0) 46
Maurice Harkless, POR 72 (4,979) 35 (2) 9 (0) 47
Dragan Bender, PHO 68 (5,277) 47 (1) 9 (0) 48
Nick Collison, OKC 58 (7,445) 74 (0) 9 (0) 49.75
Kevon Looney, GSW 60 (7,166) 74 (0) 9 (0) 50.75
Ekpe Udoh, UTA 84 (3,951) 29 (3) 9 (0) 51.5
Matt Costello, SAS 76 (4,598) 47 (1) 9 (0) 52
Tarik Black, HOU 63 (6,575) 74 (0) 9 (0) 52.25
Andrew Bogut, LAL 64 (5,790) 74 (0) 9 (0) 52.75
Damian Jones, GSW 78 (4,328) 47 (1) 9 (0) 53
Thomas Bryant, LAL 65 (5,699) 74 (0) 9 (0) 53.25
Patrick Patterson, OKC 66 (5,601) 74 (0) 9 (0) 53.75
Zach Collins, POR 86 (3,832) 35 (2) 9 (0) 54
Kenneth Faried, DEN 67 (5,597) 74 (0) 9 (0) 54.25
Ivica Zubac, LAL 81 (4,169) 47 (1) 9 (0) 54.5
Trey Lyles, DEN 82 (4,048) 47 (1) 9 (0) 55
Sam Dekker, LAC 69 (5,274) 74 (0) 9 (0) 55.25
Corey Brewer, LAL 73 (4,972) 74 (0) 9 (0) 57.25
Chris Boucher, GSW 74 (4,751) 74 (0) 9 (0) 57.75
Gorgui Dieng, MIN 88 (3,611) 47 (1) 9 (0) 58
Juan Hernangomez, DEN 75 (4,605) 74 (0) 9 (0) 58.25
Richard Jefferson, DEN 77 (4,501) 74 (0) 9 (0) 59.25
Maxi Kleber, DAL 79 (4,220) 74 (0) 9 (0) 60.25
Josh Huestis, OKC 80 (4,188) 74 (0) 9 (0) 60.75
Greg Monroe, PHO 83 (4,007) 74 (0) 9 (0) 62.25
Montrezl Harrell, LAC 85 (3,892) 74 (0) 9 (0) 63.25
Darius Miller, NOP 99 (2,707) 47 (1) 9 (0) 63.5
Luol Deng, LAL 87 (3,690) 74 (0) 9 (0) 64.25
Dwight Powell, DAL 101 (2,579) 47 (1) 9 (0) 64.5
Jonas Jerebko, UTA 89 (3,505) 74 (0) 9 (0) 65.25
Thabo Sefolosha, UTA 90 (3,330) 74 (0) 9 (0) 65.75
Justin Jackson, SAC 104 (2,356) 47 (1) 9 (0) 66
Meyers Leonard, POR 91 (3,264) 74 (0) 9 (0) 66.25
Harry Giles, SAC 92 (3,200) 74 (0) 9 (0) 66.75
Skal Labissiere, SAC 93 (3,107) 74 (0) 9 (0) 67.25
Dillon Brooks, MEM 94 (3,090) 74 (0) 9 (0) 67.75
Noah Vonleh, POR 95 (2,968) 74 (0) 9 (0) 68.25
Kyle Singler, OKC 96 (2,907) 74 (0) 9 (0) 68.75
Alex Len, PHO 97 (2,790) 74 (0) 9 (0) 69.25
Deyonta Davis, MEM 120 (1,367) 29 (3) 9 (0) 69.5
Wilson Chandler, DEN 98 (2,768) 74 (0) 9 (0) 69.75
Nerlens Noel, DAL 113 (1,799) 47 (1) 9 (0) 70.5
Mason Plumlee, DEN 100 (2,622) 74 (0) 9 (0) 70.75
James Ennis III, MEM 114 (1,732) 47 (1) 9 (0) 71
Royce O'Neale, UTA 121 (1,364) 35 (2) 9 (0) 71.5
Darrell Arthur, DEN 102 (2,523) 74 (0) 9 (0) 71.75
Dakari Johnson, OKC 116 (1,694) 47 (1) 9 (0) 72
Troy Williams, HOU 103 (2,386) 74 (0) 9 (0) 72.25
Chandler Parsons, MEM 105 (2,353) 74 (0) 9 (0) 73.25
JaMychal Green, MEM 106 (2,306) 74 (0) 9 (0) 73.75
Anthony Brown, MIN 106 (2,306) 74 (0) 9 (0) 73.75
Caleb Swanigan, POR 108 (2,266) 74 (0) 9 (0) 74.75
Salah Mejri, DAL 109 (2,264) 74 (0) 9 (0) 75.25
Willie Reed, LAC 123 (1,217) 47 (1) 9 (0) 75.5
Dante Cunningham, NOP 110 (2,067) 74 (0) 9 (0) 75.75
Brice Johnson, LAC 124 (1,090) 47 (1) 9 (0) 76
Chinanu Onuaku, HOU 111 (2,012) 74 (0) 9 (0) 76.25
Jared Dudley, PHO 112 (1,806) 74 (0) 9 (0) 76.75
JaKarr Sampson, SAC 128 (1,020) 47 (1) 9 (0) 78
Wesley Johnson, LAC 115 (1,718) 74 (0) 9 (0) 78.25
Tony Bradley, UTA 117 (1,692) 74 (0) 9 (0) 79.25
Jack Cooley, SAC 131 (956) 47 (1) 9 (0) 79.5
Jake Layman, POR 118 (1,684) 74 (0) 9 (0) 79.75
Solomon Hill, NOP 119 (1,380) 74 (0) 9 (0) 80.25
Tyler Lydon, DEN 135 (850) 47 (1) 9 (0) 81.5
Dorian Finney-Smith, DAL 122 (1,291) 74 (0) 9 (0) 81.75
Brandan Wright, MEM 138 (739) 47 (1) 9 (0) 83
Justin Patton, MIN 125 (1,081) 74 (0) 9 (0) 83.25
Jamil Wilson, LAC 126 (1,054) 74 (0) 9 (0) 83.75
Eric Griffin 127 (1,024) 74 (0) 9 (0) 84.25
Cheick Diallo, NOP 129 (963) 74 (0) 9 (0) 85.25
Danuel House, PHO 130 (962) 74 (0) 9 (0) 85.75
Erik McCree, UTA 132 (923) 74 (0) 9 (0) 86.75
Josh McRoberts, DAL 133 (918) 74 (0) 9 (0) 87.25
Jarell Martin, MEM 134 (917) 74 (0) 9 (0) 87.75
Alan Williams, PHO 136 (823) 74 (0) 9 (0) 88.75
Ivan Rabb, MEM 137 (796) 74 (0) 9 (0) 89.25
Kyle Collinsworth, DAL 139 (685) 74 (0) 9 (0) 90.25
Alec Peters, PHO 140 (646) 74 (0) 9 (0) 90.75
Jalen Jones, NOP 141 (617) 74 (0) 9 (0) 91.25
Johnathan Motley, DAL 142 (608) 74 (0) 9 (0) 91.75
Vincent Hunter, MEM 143 (604) 74 (0) 9 (0) 92.25
Myke Henry, MEM 144 (316) 74 (0) 9 (0) 92.75
Jeff Withey 145 (136) 74 (0) 9 (0) 93.25
Amile Jefferson, MIN 146 (70) 74 (0) 9 (0) 93.75

Media voters

Marv Albert (Turner)
David Aldridge (Turner)
Sam Amick (USA Today)
Kevin Arnovitz (ESPN.com)
Steve Aschburner (NBA.com)
Brent Barry (Turner)
Jon Barry (ESPN Radio)
Michelle Beadle (ABC/ESPN)
Howard Beck (Bleacher Report)
Sherrod Blakeley (CSNNE.com)
Stefan Bondy (New York Daily News)
Scott Bordow (Arizona Republic)
Mike Breen (ABC/ESPN)
Chris Broussard (Fox Sports)
Clifton Brown (Indianapolis Star)
Hubie Brown (ABC/ESPN)
Ric Bucher (Bleacher Report)
Doris Burke (ABC/ESPN)
PJ Carlesimo (ESPN Radio)
Davide Chinellato (LaGazetta Dello Sport)
Joe Cowley (Chicago Sun-Times)
Brett Dawson (The Oklahoman)
Sean Deveney (The Sporting News)
Amin Elhassan (ESPN.com)
Vince Ellis (Detroit Free Press)
Paul Flannery (SB Nation)
Mike Ganter (The Toronto Sun)
Rosalyn Gold-Onwude (Turner)
Ben Golliver (Sports Illustrated)
Vince Goodwill (CSNChicago.com)
Michael Grange (Rogers Sportsnet)
Jared Greenberg (Turner)
Will Guillory (New Orleans Times Picayune)
Kevin Harlan (Turner)
Chris Haynes (ESPN.com)
Kurt Helin (NBCSports.com)
Chase Hughes (NBCSportsWashington.com)
Frank Isola (Sirius Radio/New York Daily News)
Mark Jackson (ABC/ESPN)
Lee Jenkins (Sports Illustrated)
Ernie Johnson (Turner)
Jason Jones (Sacramento Bee)
Tony Jones (Salt Lake Tribune)
Mark Kestecher (ESPN Radio)
Nira Kihurana (Excelsior)
Jon Krawczynski (The Athletic)
Kristen Ledlow (Turner)
Connor Letourneau (San Francisco Chronicle)
Jason Lloyd (The Athletic)
Greg Logan (Newsday)
Jackie MacMullan (ESPN.com)
Brian Mahoney (Associated Press)
Rob Mahoney (SI.com)
Chris Mannix (Yahoo!)
TJ Manotoc (ABC-CBN)
Diego Martínez (Periódico Reforma)
Jeff McDonald (San Antonio Express-News)
Dave McMenamin (ESPN.com)
Reggie Miller (Turner)
Yoko Miyaji (Sports Graphic Number)
Gina Mizell (Denver Post)
Manny Navaro (Miami Herald)
Rachel Nichols (ABC/ESPN)
Kevin O’Connor (The Ringer)
Bill Oram (Orange County Register)
Kevin Pelton (ESPN.com)
Keith Pompey (Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News)
Jason Quick (NBC Sports Northwest)
Tim Reynolds (Associated Press)
Jalen Rose (ABC/ESPN)
John Schuhmann (NBA.com)
Dennis Scott (Turner)
Eddie Sefko (Dallas Morning News)
Andrew Sharp (Sports Illustrated)
Ramona Shelburne (ESPN.com)
Lisa Shen (Tencent)
Bill Simmons (The Ringer)
Doug Smith (The Toronto Star)
Sekou Smith (NBA.com)
Steve Smith (Turner)
Thales Soares (Globoesporte.com)
Marc Spears (The Undefeated)
Elliott Teaford (Southern California News Group)
Justin Termine (Sirius Radio)
Ron Tillery (Memphis Commercial-Appeal)
Flavio Tranquillo (Sky Italia)
Xavier Vaution (BeIn Sport)
Matt Velazquez (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)
Ailene Voisin (Sacramento Bee)
Richard Walker (Gaston Gazette)
Gary Washburn (Boston Globe)
Chris Webber (Turner)
Michael Wilbon (ABC/ESPN)
Brian Windhorst (ESPN.com)
Matt Winer (Turner)
Royce Young (ESPN.com)
Jerry Zgoda (Minneapolis Star-Tribune)
Weiping Zhang (CCTV)
Jeff Zillgitt (USA Today)

Damian Lillard “frustrated” with All-Star snubs

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It seemed pretty obvious to most: In picking the two All-Star starting guards in the Western Conference, you couldn’t go wrong with any combination of Stephen Curry, James Harden, and Russell Westbrook (Curry and Harden got the nods).

When it comes time for the coaches to pick the reserves (announced next Tuesday) they will select Westbrook. However, Damian Lillard might not make that cut.

Lillard said he’s frustrated but resigned to not making the All-Star Game (he’s missed it the last three), he told ESPN.

“I’ve gotten frustrated just for the fact that it feels like I always got to be the fall guy and every other guy has been deserving,” Lillard tells ESPN. “In the past, the thing has been, ‘All right, my team has been 10 games under .500 or not in the playoffs,’ but every year we’ve found a way to be in the postseason, and this year I think we’re in much better position than we have been in the past two seasons that I didn’t make it. I think I’ve gotten over the emotional part of it the last few times that I didn’t make it. Now I’m kind of like expecting it to go that way, but I feel like I should be there.”

Lillard was not going to be a starter, and if you want to blame someone for that blame the fans who had him eighth (worse than players or media) — behind Lonzo Ball and Manu Ginobili.

“(Ball) plays for the Los Angeles Lakers, one of the most, if not the most, storied franchises in that big of a market,” Lillard explained to ESPN. “So, so many people are going to support him throughout that, and also with his dad and all the attention that’s been surrounding him since college. There’s a lot of people that follow him, so, that’s not really a surprise to me. The market size and what’s going on with his family, it’s no surprise really to me.”

Lillard deserves to be an All-Star — he’s averaging 25 points per game, plus he’s dishing out 6.5 assists per night, and his defense has improved.

Whether he makes it is another story. The Western Conference is STACKED. When the coaches pick the seven West reserves, they have to take two guards, three frontcourt players, then two wild-cards. Westbrook and Jimmy Butler are locks to get selected as All-Star Game reserves at the West. That leaves one or two of the wild-card slots for guards, and both Klay Thompson and Lou Williams have legitimate cases to make the team, too.

Lillard would be a snub. So will whichever one of those guards gets left off. There is just too much talent in the West.

 

Three Things to Know: All-Star starters named, who should be in reserve?

Associated Press
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Every day in the NBA there is a lot to unpack, so every weekday morning throughout the season we will give you the three things you need to know from the last 24 hours in the NBA.

1) All-Star Starters named, but the decisions much tougher with reserves. Not everybody took their jobs seriously (unless you think Semi Ojeleye, Cedi Osman, and Royce O'Neale earned starting All-Star slots). Not everybody liked the results — Damian Lillard felt snubbed.

Still, it was mostly the usual suspects and there were no surprises as the NBA All-Star Game starters were announced. They were picked by a vote of the fans (50 percent), players (25 percent), and selected media members (25 percent). Here’s the list.

Western Conference: Golden State’s Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant, Houston’s James Harden, and New Orleans’ Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins.

Eastern Conference: Cleveland’s LeBron James, Boston’s Kyrie Irving, Toronto’s DeMar DeRozan, Milwaukee’s Giannis Antetokounmpo, and Philadelphia’s Joel Embiid.

Remember it is not East vs. West this year. LeBron and Curry, as the top vote-getters, will be the captains and select teammates in a playground-style draft, first from the starters listed above, then from a pool of reserves selected by the coaches to be announced next Tuesday. LeBron chooses first and what is Curry going to do when LeBron goes with Durant?

Picking those reserves is where someone will get snubbed — there is no way to pick just seven players per conference and not leave out deserving guys. Damian Lillard didn’t deserve to be an All-Star starter no matter what he thinks, but is he even an All-Star this year in the loaded West? There must be two backcourt, three frontcourt, and two wild-card selections for each conference. Here’s who I would pick:

Eastern Conference: Victor Oladipo, John Wall, Al Horford, Kristaps Porzingis, Andre Drummond, Bradley Beal, and Kyle Lowry. That leaves out Kevin Love, which was hard as he’s been very good after being pushed to center this season.

Western Conference: Russell Westbrook, Jimmy Butler, LaMarcus Aldridge, Draymond Green, Karl-Anthony Towns, Klay Thompson, Lou Williams. This was brutal, leaving out Damian Lillard, Nikola Jokic, and Paul George completely, even though they fully deserve an All-Star slot. So much talent moved West this season that the conference is overloaded.

2) The Cleveland Cavaliers win… over the Orlando Magic. By one point. After blowing a 22-point lead. “Right now we’re in Strugglesville,” is how LeBron put the Cavaliers right now. He’s right. Cleveland had lost four in a row and was 2-8 in their last 10 coming into this one, but Thursday night they were facing one of the flat-out worst teams in the NBA in Orlando, so easy win? Nope. It took a couple Isaiah Thomas free throws with 11 seconds left — then Elfrid Payton missing a contested layup with a couple of seconds left — to give the Cavaliers a 104-103 win.

Cleveland was up 22 in this one, but once again their defense isn’t good and when the offense isn’t firing on all cylinders they can be beaten by anyone. The Cavs shot 1-of-17 from three in the second half and were outscored by 16 in the third quarter, blowing another good first half effort.

There were bright spots for the Cavs. Derrick Rose returned to the lineup and after missing two months due to a sprained ankle, and he had nine points in 13 minutes on the court. And Isaiah Thomas had a strong night.

However, the play of the night — and maybe the assist of the season — went to LeBron.


3) James Harden returns, Rockets pick up win over Timberwolves.
The Houston Rockets picked up a quality win at home over a Minnesota Timberwolves squad that is playing good basketball — and that’s not really the big news out of this one.

James Harden was back and starting for the Rockets. He missed seven games with a strained hamstring and the Rockets went 4-3 without him, which is not bad but they were not the same dominant team. Harden had 10 points and seven assists in limited minutes, and he understandably showed a little rust. His return this fast is a boost for his MVP chances if he can return to form — he and LeBron have been neck-and-neck as the frontrunners for the award this season, and the injury gave LeBron the chance to take charge of the race, but instead the Cavaliers have stumbled badly of late. Harden has a chance to take hold of this race, something that does matter to him.

Finally having Harden and Chris Paul healthy moved Eric Gordon back to his sixth man role and he thrived, dropping 30.

Gordon would be the frontrunner for Sixth Man of the Year, but he started too many games due to injury (half of them, coming into this game). If Paul and Harden can stay on the court, Gordon could repeat as Sixth Man winner.

Elfrid Payton slams chasedown block on LeBron James (VIDEO)

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LeBron James is usually the guy handing out chasedown blocks. He’s famous for them, and has carted out his signature move in the biggest moments of his career.

He’s also not used to having his own shots blocked from behind, and certainly not by opposing point guards.

Enter Elfrid Payton.

During a play halfway through the first quarter against the Orlando Magic on Thursday, LeBron was on a drive to the hole with Elfrid trailing far behind.

Thanks to a pinch by two Magic defenders, LeBron had to try and use brute force a bit deeper in the paint than he wanted to.

That allowed Payton — running at full speed — to catch up and pin The King on the glass.

Cleveland still got the best of the Magic, as Isaiah Thomas hit a clutch free throw to win the game with 11 seconds left, 104-103.