It comes as no surprise Kobe Bryant led in votes for the 2016 NBA All-Star game. Fans honored the future Hall of Famer in his last year in the NBA, Although this is probably Bryant´s worst NBA season ever, he still managed to make the All-Star game with his not so all-star season. Everyone seems to be happy for Bryant and his final rodeo in the NBA, but when Demarcus Cousins, center for Sacramento Kings, was asked about his thoughts on the whole situation he was infuriated. Cousins believes that the All-Star Game chooses good players on winning teams, and in his books fan voting wouldn´t be an option. Other NBA players join Cousins in the same problem of fan voting.
So is Cousins right? Does he deserve to be angry with the fan voting? Well it is clear that Cousins has dominated the front court in any game that he plays. He is currently averaging 27.2 points per game (ppg) , which surpasses all the other players in the West´s starting line-up except for Warriors Guard Stephen Curry (29.4ppg), and is tied with Thunder´s forward Kevin Durant (27.2ppg). Cousins has a reason to be angry, because he will be watching the starting minutes from the bench, watching the players that he is competing with for the scoring title of the NBA.
So maybe it’s fair to say that All-Star game is a backcourt-dominated game. But that still doesn’t solve the case of Bryant making it to the starting lineup. Bryant is averaging 15.7 ppg, 3.9 rpg, 3.5 apg. These statistics are bench quality. Bryant is not even the leading scorer of the 9-41 Lakers. Another guard who should take that starting role in the All-Star game should have been Houston Rockets guard James Harden (27.2 ppg, 6.3 rpg, 6.9 apg), who has managed to have a stellar year and is getting overlooked.
With all the commotion with Bryant and making the starting lineup, the same problem has been overlooked in the East. Dwyane Wade has always been an Eastern Conference fan favorite, but what really surprised me was the fact that Chicago guard Jimmy Butler was not selected as a starter.This is more surprising than Bryant making the starting team, because it is Bryant’s last year the fans want to see that last game with him starting. But for Wade he still has a few years in him, and it is still another day in the office for him. So what really surprised me is that even with the rise to superstardom of Jimmy Butler and his likable personality. Wade still is the starting guard for the game. Jimmy Butler is one of the best two-way players in the NBA. He is averaging 22.4 ppg, 5.3 rpg, and 4.3 apg. Although Wade is not having an awful season, he is not averaging nearly the same numbers. Wade is averaging 18.7 ppg, 4.1 rpg, and 4.6 apg. The fans clearly picked a favorite for the Eastern guard, but not the best Eastern guard.
So with the fan voting picking the teams for the All-Star game, players like Cousins, Harden, and Butler will just have to wait for these great players to give up their supremacy on the NBA. The guys like Cousins are right to be angry.