Author: Kurt Helin

2013 NBA Finals - Game Three

Charles Barkley: “Chris Paul doesn’t deserve to make the All-Star team”


Chris Paul has been selected for the last seven All-Star Games, played in six of them and started four.

This season CP3 is averaging 17.3 points and dishing out 9.8 assists a game, he has a .579 true shooting percentage well above the league average and has a PER of 24.7 — all of those numbers right around his career averages — while leading the Clippers to a 29-14 record.

But in a loaded Western Conference deep with guards Charles Barkley says Chris Paul doesn’t deserve to make the All-Star Team. None of the guys on TNT’s “Inside the NBA” picked Paul as an All-Star reserve. Barkley went on the Clippers’ flagship radio station Friday, The Beast 980 in Los Angeles, and defended his choice.

“Chris Paul doesn’t deserve to make the All-Star team. I love Chris. I’ve said that he’s the best leader we’ve got in the NBA now, but he’s not an All-Star this year. There are too many guys head of him. Steph Curry is the MVP probably, so far this year in the NBA. You’ve got Klay Thompson too.

“Steph is the leading vote-getter, and he’s best the best PG in the NBA this year. Kobe’s there, and that’s going to be the big decision, but then you’ve got James Harden, Klay Thompson, Damian Lillard…. It’s going to be very difficult for Chris to make the team this year.”

I think Barkley is wrong here.

Yes, Stephen Curry is the leading vote getter, MVP candidate and starter at the point. As it should be. Yes, Kobe Bryant was voted in by the fans (even though it appears he will miss the game due to injury).

But that leaves still three or four more guard spots, depending on how you want to use your “wild card” slots. I think we can all agree that James Harden should make the team (and be slotted as a starter if Kobe is out) and Damian Lillard should be in as well.

After that, who are you putting ahead of CP3? On Barkley’s list on TNT he had Russell Westbrook and Klay Thompson ahead of Paul. Both guys having great seasons but Westbrook missed a lot of games with injuries and Thompson, while having a great season, is not the floor general or leader of an elite team the way Paul is — CP3 means more to the Clippers.

Barkley is big on rewarding winning teams… um, the Clippers are 29-14, that’s a 55-win pace? No, the Clips have not lived up to the preseason hype, they’ve been maddeningly inconsistent, but they are still winning. A lot.

After that there are great choices out West, I hate to see Mike Conley miss the team, but the conference is just loaded.

That said, if you’re leaving Chris Paul off your team you’re doing it wrong.

DeAndre Jordan posterizes Brook Lopez with alley-oop finish (VIDEO)

Brooklyn Nets v Los Angeles Clippers
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That pretty much sums up how the Nets’ game against the Clippers went Thursday.

Late in the second quarter of the Clippers utter destruction of the Nets Thursday, DeAndre Jordan was rolling down the lane, got the alley-oop pass from Chris Paul, went up to finish and Brook Lopez quaintly tried to rotate over. It didn’t end well for Lopez.

After the game Jordan was having a laugh about the play.

PBT Extra: Our mid-season awards for MVP, Most Improved, Defense

Stephen Curry

Welcome to the second of our mid-year award picks. We’ve already tackled Coach of the Year, Rookie of the Year and Sixth Man.

Now Jenna Corrado and I I move on to Defensive Player of the Year (maybe the most wide open of the races at the halfway point), Most Improved and the big one, MVP.

Of these only one seems sewn up for the year, with all the injuries to rookies it’s hard to imagine anyone but Andrew Wiggins winning ROY. Right now MVP seems like a Stephen Curry/James Harden race, but that could change.