(Now for the disclaimer — yes, I know not all Lakers fans are like this. I grew up in L.A., I live in the area [I’m a Long Beach guy now]. I ran a Lakers blog. J.A. Adande had the best description of the Lakers fan base I’ve seen (which he borrowed or adapted from someone else, as I remember): It’s like an iceberg, you really only see 10 percent of Lakers fans. Or of Los Angeles in general. You see the movie stars and rich people who can afford the good seats at games, the people there to be seen as much as see the game and who are constantly checking their iPhones. But Los Angeles is a Lakers town deep down and there are a lot of mechanics and insurance salesmen and Thai food cooks who are passionate about the Lakers but not crazy or self-obsessed. You just don’t see them because they sit above the luxury boxes or watch at home, and they don’t frequent message boards or comment on blogs.)
Tonight the NBA All-Star Game starters will be announced. Then the coaches have a week to vote and the rest of the roster will be put together by them.
This year should see a few first-time All-Stars, guys bursting on the scene and grabbing fans attention — so we asked people on Twitter who they most wanted to see in his first All-Star Game and I break it down in this PBT Extra.
The winner? Giannis Antetokounmpo with 45 percent of the vote. Which shouldn’t be a surprise, he’s second in the fan voting for the frontcourt in the East (behind only LeBron James). Good news for those fans, the Greek Freak is almost guaranteed to be a starter, he’s getting plenty of media votes and likely a lot from the players as well.
Second place in the poll? Joel Embiid of the Sixers. I’d love to see him, but will players and media members vote in a guy on a minutes restriction? Will the coaches pick him for that same reason? He is on the bubble.