NBA All-Star ballot to include all players, voting to begin later

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Expecting to see NBA All-Star ballots this week?

Hang tight.

If you know the league’s annual voting schedule to the point you’re anticipating ballots before they come out, that’s pretty intense (and impressive).

But the campaign calendar has changed, anyway.

Associated Press:

The NBA is expanding the All-Star ballot to include all players, and pushing back the start of voting so fans can better consider their choices.

Voting for the Feb. 15 game in New York will open Dec. 11. It traditionally began this week, when teams aren’t even 10 games into their seasons.

The ballot on NBA.com will for the first time feature every player in the league. It formerly included only 60 players per conference who had been selected by a media panel.

Putting all players on the ballot is a good change. In the internet era, there’s no reason not to do this. It’s not as if the webpage has to be pre-printed like the ballots you find in arenas.

Every year, players not on the ballot surprise with strong seasons, and they deserve to be represented. It’s a huge longshot any of those players would win a starting spot, but they deserve fair consideration.

As far as delaying the voting, I doubt that makes much difference. People vote for players they like. An extra month of analysis might change perception of certain players’ abilities, but it won’t do much to swing their popularity.