• Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

Opinion: What the fans, media and players got wrong about the NBA All-Star Game starters

·2 min read
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

SALT LAKE CITY – The All-Star starter fan voting always fuels snub debates.

This year isn’t any different, but having a media vote, let’s make some tweaks to the West and East starters that were announced on Thursday.

Just to clarify, the fans make up 50% of the All-Star starter voting. Current players account for 25% while the media make up the remaining 25% of the vote.

Western Conference starters

Backcourt: Steph Curry, Warriors; Ja Morant, Grizzlies

Frontcourt: LeBron James, Lakers; Nikola Jokic, Nuggets; Andrew Wiggins, Warriors

Keep in mind fans, current NBA players and media vote for two backcourt players and three frontcourt players.

Breaking the rules, here’s my West starters.

Devin Booker (1) is the best player on the team with the NBA's best record. Because of that, he should be among the All-Star Game starters.
Devin Booker (1) is the best player on the team with the NBA's best record. Because of that, he should be among the All-Star Game starters.

Rankin's Western Conference starters

Backcourt: Steph Curry, Warriors; Ja Morant, Grizzlies; Devin Booker, Suns

Frontcourt: LeBron James, Lakers; Nikola Jokic, Nuggets

Wiggins is having a very good year for a team that came out the gate roaring, but Booker is having a better year as he’s averaging 30.5 points during Phoenix’s current eight-game winning streak.

FYI, Wiggins is a frontcourt player. Booker is a backcourt player

Plus, the Suns have the NBA’s best record. To have that distinction and not have an All-Star starter is a bad look, but the same thing happened to Utah last season.

So maybe there needs to be a disclaimer that the team with the best record in the East and West will have at least one All-Star starter if one isn’t voted in by fans/current players/media.

That would reward winning.

Eastern Conference All-Star starters

Backcourt: DeMar DeRozan, Bulls; Trae Young, Hawks

Frontcourt: Kevin Durant, Nets; Giannis Antetokounmpo, Bucks; Joel Embiid, 76ers

Durant will miss the All-Star game with a knee injury. That leaves an open spot. Here’s my tweak for the East starters.

Jimmy Butler (22) is averaging 21.4 points, 6.0 rebounds and 6.0 assists for the East-leading Heat.
Jimmy Butler (22) is averaging 21.4 points, 6.0 rebounds and 6.0 assists for the East-leading Heat.

Rankin's Eastern Conference starters

Backcourt: DeMar DeRozan, Bulls; Trae Young, Hawks; Jimmy Butler, Heat

Frontcourt: Giannis Antetokounmpo, Bucks; Joel Embiid, Sixers

The Heat have had an incredible year, especially when you consider Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo have missed a huge chunk of the season. They are atop the standings in the East, leading the Bulls by a half game.

So Zach LaVine could work, but so could Butler.

Again, winning should matter here. It does with everything else.

Reach Suns Insider Duane Rankin at dmrankin@gannett.com or contact him at 480-787-1240. Follow him on Twitter at @DuaneRankin.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: NBA All-Stars: Winning should be rewarded when choosing starters