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Very Early Predictions for the 2013 NBA All-Star Game Rosters

Maxwell OgdenCorrespondent IIIJanuary 7, 2017

Very Early Predictions for the 2013 NBA All-Star Game Rosters

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    The 2012 NBA offseason appears to have ceased movement as the big names have finally found their homes. From the big time trades to the shocking signings, there hasn't been a dull moment to follow since this year's period of free agency began.

    But now it's time for some basketball.

    As we enter the 2012-13 NBA regular season, there are two aspects of the game that fans and analysts everywhere will be debating. For one, who will take home the gold? As always, the best team in the NBA will be crowned prematurely and a target will be set on their backs. But who will it be?

    As for the other question on everyone's mind, it's quite simple. While a franchise will win a title, an individual will win the headlines and attention. Therefore, each and every person affiliated with the NBA will be wondering the same thing.

    Who will make the 2013 NBA All-Star Game rosters? Here's a preview of the basketball elite.

Honorable Mention: Derrick Rose, Chicago Bulls

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    Before the outrage gets out of hand, don't forget that Derrick Rose will likely be sidelined until March. While the votes will put him on the roster, he will not be in the game. For that reason, he is absent from this list.

    Hold back your tears and proceed onward.

Eastern Conference Guard: Deron Williams, Brooklyn Nets

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    Rajon Rondo deserves this starting spot and there's no other way around it. With the growing buzz and popularity surrounding the Brooklyn Nets, however, Deron Williams will be the man who replaces the injured Derrick Rose.

    Just don't think for a second that D-Will is undeserving of this recognition.

    Deron Williams was the only player in the NBA to average at least 20 points and eight assists per game. Those statistics ended up being at 21.0 points and 8.7 assists per contest, which even trumped Chris Paul's 19.8 points and 9.1 assists.

    Stating that Deron Williams is one of the best point guards in the NBA is no longer farfetched. Watching him slice and dice while playing for a winning franchise will only elevate his status amongst the NBA's elite.

    Expect a career year on the defensive end of the floor from Deron Williams as well, as he carries over his superb ball pressure from the 2012 London Olympics.

     

    Projected Season Averages:

    19.6 PPG, 10.1 APG, 3.5 RPG, 1.7 SPG, 46.0% FG

Eastern Conference Guard: Dwyane Wade, Miami Heat

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    There should be no doubt about this selection, as Dwyane Wade remains one of the Top 10 players in the NBA. He also remains one of the two elite shooting guards in the NBA, making for round two of the infamous D-Wade vs. Kobe showdown.

    A battle that is certain to provide entertainment for any fan of the art of basketball.

    As for how Wade will reach his ninth All-Star Game appearance, the Miami Heat's notoriety and the former Marquette star's on-court brilliance should seal the deal. He'll once again top the 20 point per game plateau while continuing to improve his consistency on defense.

    If nothing else, we have to honor a guy who blocks jump shots like Dwight Howard blocks layups.

    D-Wade will continue to put up a stellar stat line in which he fills all categories. While injury is always a concern for the shooting guard, there is no reason he can't thrive if his body holds up.

    Regardless of what occurs, D-Wade will be starting the All-Star game.

     

    Projected Season Averages

    23.3 PPG, 5.0 RPG, 4.9 APG, 1.8 SPG, 1.4 BPG

Eastern Conference Forward: LeBron James, Miami Heat

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    For anyone who believes LeBron James will miss out on starting the 2013 NBA All-Star Game, you may as well quit while you're not too far behind.

    The reigning regular season and Finals MVP has firmly established himself as the best player in the world. He's a modern day Magic Johnson as he plays every position on the court with efficiency, intelligence and flat out dominance.

    He also happens to be on the runaway favorite to win the NBA Title in 2013.

    With all factors weighed, it's safe to say that LeBron James will be at the top of every fan's ballot. He'll likely lead the league in All-Star votes and emerge once again as a starter in the battle of the elite.

     

    Projected Season Averages

    26.7 PPG, 8.1 RPG, 7.4 APG, 1.2 SPG, 0.9 BPG

Eastern Conference Forward: Carmelo Anthony, New York Knicks

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    In his tenth season in the NBA, expect Carmelo Anthony to have a career year. The points will flow in, rebounds grow to an all-time high and his all-around defensive effort will reflect what we saw in final month of the 2012 regular season.

    Carmelo Anthony will be dominant in every sense of the word. Even if he weren't, he'd be right back where he was in 2012 as the starter for the Eastern Conference's All-Star team.

    When a player is able to overcome a dismal first half of the season and still start an All-Star Game, it's clear what their status is in the NBA. With 'Melo set to break free from the memory of that treacherous  season, his place amongst the elite will only be solidified.

    Dropping in a cool 28 points per game will do that for a player.

     

    Projected Season Averages

    29.1 PPG, 7.8 RPG, 3.1 APG, 1.2 SPG, 46.7% FG

Eastern Conference Center: Dwight Howard, Orlando Magic

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    Dwight Howard is a mercurial athlete whose inability to determine his future destination has led to the understandable frustration of fans and peers alike. What his indecision has not led to, however, is even the slightest alteration in ability.

    D-12 will continue to dominate the NBA and erase doubt in any logical mind that he is the best center the world has to offer.

    One of the most popular points of attack for fans looking to prove Howard as inferior to Andrew Bynum is the comparison of their offense. Bynum, of course, is the more polished of the two and possesses the necessary fundamentals to dominate via skill rather than physical ability.

    That, folks, is the only time you'll hear a fan justify their distaste with Dwight Howard averaging 20.6 points per game on 57.3 percent shooting from the floor.

    Dwight Howard will dominate the glass, swat shots and lead an overachieving Orlando Magic unit in 2012-13. Should he be traded, the only thing that may change here is the Conference he represents. Dwight Howard will start.

    No matter which team he ends up playing for.

     

    Projected Season Averages:

    21.2 PPG, 14.1 RPG, 2.0 APG, 2.6 BPG, 1.4 SPG

Eastern Conference Reserves

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    Guards

    Rajon Rondo, Boston Celtics

    Rajon Rondo should be starting. Unfortunately, fans do not take kindly to pass-first point guards in a day and age in which scoring outweighs facilitating. Rajon Rondo does not deserve this spot; he deserves the chance to start.

     

    Joe Johnson, Brooklyn Nets

    Joe Johnson is entering a new situation in which he finally has an elite point guard to feed him the ball. This will lead to Johnson wasting less possessions by over-dribbling and find much easier looks as he works without the rock in his grip. Joe Johnson will be back for his seventh consecutive All-Star appearance.

     

    Evan Turner, Philadelphia 76ers

    Evan Turner has long been the product of extraordinary buzz. As a college ball player at Ohio State, Turner swept the 2010 National Player of the Year awards. He followed that up by being selected with the second overall draft choice that Summer and has since been labeled as the savior for the Philadelphia 76ers.

    In 2013, Turner will live up to the hype. He'll ease the Philadelphia 76ers out of the Andre Iguodala era and post one of the most well-rounded stat lines in basketball.

     

    John Wall, Washington Wizards

    In 2012, John Wall was one of just three players to average at least 16 points and 8 assists per game. The other two players to reach that level were Chris Paul and Deron Williams; some nice company to be in.

    In 2013, expect Wall to continue to build on that success. He'll dominate the highlight reels and make waves as the Washington Wizards surprise many with their mid-season Win-Loss record.

     

    Forwards

    Kevin Garnett, Boston Celtics

    Kevin Garnett was unreal in the second half of the 2012 NBA season, scoring with ease and dominating the paint as if he were ten years younger. While we may not see the Kevin Garnett who played in Minnesota, we will certainly see a reflection of the defensive menace who tortured opposing teams during the postseason.

    KG is coming back to where he belongs.


    Josh Smith, Atlanta Hawks

    How Josh Smith has yet to be selected to an NBA All-Star Game causes outrage in even the most basic NBA fan. While the average mark might contest his numbers and claim blasphemy, Smith has matured and figured out a way to channel that doubt into positive reaction.

    In 2013, that trend will continue as Josh Smith absolutely controls the floor for the Atlanta Hawks. This time around, his fans and peers will reward him. 


    Center

    Greg Monroe, Detroit Pistons

    Greg Monroe is an offensive-minded big who will be consistently running the pick-and-roll with Brandon Knight. This balance and chemistry between their star players will lead to one of the better offensive seasons we've seen from a big man in quite some time.

    While he may not see significant minutes, Greg Monroe deserves this spot. Through just two years in the league, Monroe has already established himself as one of the Top 10 centers in the NBA. This will come down to a battle of Roy Hibbert and the Indiana Pacers against Greg Monroe of the Detroit Pistons.

    In this legendary showdown, Monroe will prevail.

Western Conference Guard: Chris Paul, Los Angeles Clippers

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    Should one ask an average NBA fan who the best point guard is, there's not that great of a chance that one would answer anyone other than Chris Paul. CP3's ability to score, pass, defend and play the passing lanes offer all of the help a team could need to pull out a W.

    Throw in the fact that the Wake Forest alum plays tenacious defense and you have yourself as complete a player as you'll ever find.

    In 2013, Chris Paul will continue to build that reputation. He'll make dozens of highlight reels for his play with Blake Griffin, but the true game changer is his ability to score in the clutch. His cool under pressure approach makes for an All-Star caliber performance every time out.

    More times than not, CP3 does not disappoint.

     

    Projected Season Averages

    17.1 PPG, 10.4 APG, 2.7 RPG, 2.9 SPG

Western Conference Guard: Kobe Bryant, Los Angeles Lakers

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    LeBron James is a lock for his position. Kobe Bryant, meanwhile, is on the back end of a legendary career and has commanded the respect of millions in the process. Regardless of what transpires, Bryant can always be trusted to receive the attention he deserves.

    In 2013, things will be no different.

    The greatest scorer of our time should find himself in a much better position now that Steve Nash is in Los Angeles. Due to this fact, Kobe should find easier looks at the basket and a higher percentage of shots from in close.

    An area where Kobe Bryant has dominated for years on hand.

    Bryant will post big scoring numbers, while his overall body of work displays a balanced attack on both ends of the floor. This may not be Kobe Bryant's most flashy season, but his fundamental genius should carry him to an outstanding campaign.

    With age comes wisdom and Kobe Bryant certainly does not lack.

     

    Projected Season Averages

    26.7 PPG, 5.2 RPG, 4.1 APG, 1.6 SPG, 46.1% FG

Western Conference Forward: Kevin Durant, Oklahoma City Thunder

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    The three-time defending scoring champion is hot on LeBron James' heels for the title of "best in the world." He's also coming off of a disappointing defeat in the NBA finals at James and the Miami Heat's hands, which leaves nothing but a sour taste in his mouth and motivation in his heart.

    Expect the best season of Kevin Durant's young, but outstanding career.

    Durant has proven during the 2012 Summer Olympics what type of player he can be. Although many criticize his passive nature, Durant makes an absolutely outrageously high percentage of his shots. This is especially impressive considering how many jump shots he'll take on a given evening.

    With Russell Westbrook and James Harden both witnessing this Olympic dominance first hand, expect each to take a stand as they force Durant to overcome his humble ways. With a more aggressive approach and a true feel for what's expected of him in order to help his team win, there is no limit but the sky.

    There is also no telling how much longer LeBron James will be alone atop the NBA's totem pole. Expect Kevin Durant to be the first player to average 30 points per game since he did it in 2010.

     

    Projected Season Averages

    30.3 PPG, 8.7 RPG, 3.6 APG, 1.4 SPG, 1.1 BPG

Western Conference Forward: Kevin Love, Minnesota Timberwolves

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    The best word to describe Kevin Love is "machine."

    Quite frankly, what Kevin Love is able to accomplish just isn't natural. He's a lights out three-point shooter, despite playing the power forward position. He's, arguably, the best rebounder in the NBA despite lacking any outstanding form of athletic ability.

    He's also the hardest working player on the floor almost every time out; a combination of characteristics that justifies his identity as a machine.

    In 2013, we should expect more of the same from Kevin Love as he leads a much stronger Minnesota Timberwolves unit towards a playoff push. Love now has a strong enough perimeter that teams cannot close out on him in the post or double-team him on the perimeter.

    Kevin Love now has the best supporting cast he's ever played with. Expect the numbers to reflect his comfort level, confidence and all-around brilliance as he firmly establishes himself as the best power forward in the NBA.

    And there is no true competition.

     

    Projected Season Averages

    24.3 PPG, 13.9 RPG, 2.3 APG, 0.8 SPG

Western Conference Center: Andrew Bynum, Los Angeles Lakers

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    Andrew Bynum may just be the most polished big man in the game today. His low-post scoring attack is top tier, while his defensive prowess is on par with the best of them when focused on that aspect of his game.

    A rare, but beautiful to witness, commodity.

    In 2013, Andrew Bynum will once again receive the nod as the Western Conference's starter. The reason behind this will be an elevated level of focus on the defensive end, which should lead to career numbers in the rebounding and shot blocking departments.

    Just don't expect any sort of hit on his scoring averages.

    Andrew Bynum loves to get the ball deep in the post as he imposes his will on overmatched defenders. He'll pound it in and take it to the rack or turn around for a quick hook shot finish. Regardless of how Andrew Bynum gets it done, he gets it done.

    Expect the Los Angeles Lakers' future franchise player to break out in a major way.

     

    Projected Season Averages

    20.4 PPG, 12.3 RPG, 1.5 APG, 2.7 BPG

Western Conference Reserves

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    Guards

    Steve Nash, Los Angeles Lakers

    Regardless of where Steve Nash went, it was clear that he would make another All-Star Game. Now that he's a member of the storied Los Angeles Lakers, however, we might as well increase his chances by a full 10  percent.

    Steve Nash will finish the season with big numbers in the assist category, which should come as no surprise. He'll also improve his defensive statistics as his team defense continues to improve while he ages. The true fact to acknowledge, however, is the fact that he'll be representing the most popular franchise in the NBA.

    As is the life of a star on the Lakers.

     

    Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City Thunder

    Russell Westbrook has the ability to start and take control of the 2013 NBA All-Star Game. He's also set to change his pace this season, as he takes on an approach similar to what we've seen of him with Team USA.

    All-out defense above all else with an emphasis on intelligent shot selection. Continue to expect big numbers with a curve on the defensive end of things for the game's most athletic player.

     

    Forwards

    LaMarcus Aldridge, Portland Trail Blazers

    LaMarcus Aldridge is a legitimate threat to miss the cut this season, as his Portland Trail Blazers are headed for a year in the basement. The team will be led by a rookie point guard and really did nothing to improve the quality of their team for the 2013 season.

    Nevertheless, Aldridge does deserve this nod. He's one of the most polished offensive big men in the league and has improved tremendously on the glass. He took a turn towards stardom quite some time ago but the finishing stages of becoming elite may take place in 2012.

     

    DeMarcus Cousins, Sacramento Kings

    DeMarcus Cousins was an absolute monster in 2012. Cousins finished the season with averages of 18.1 points, 11.0 rebounds, 1.5 steals and 1.2 blocks per contest. He also established himself as, arguably, the best young power forward on the rise.

    DeMarcus Cousins has a smooth stroke on his jump shot and has range out to the three-point line. He's also one of the best low-post scorers the game has to offer, as well as the strength and physicality to bully an opponent in the paint.

    Don't be fooled, though. Cousins is certainly quick enough to blow by you for a driving jam; the type of highlight that will aid DeMarcus Cousins in his rise to fame.


    Rudy Gay, Memphis Grizzlies

    Rudy Gay has been on the cusp of greatness for quite some time. In 2013, with O.J. Mayo gone and the responsibility of leading the perimeter into battle on Gay's shoulders, expect the Connecticut alum to make the leap.

    Gay will have a career year scoring the basketball and even add some impressive rebounding and steals numbers. He'll continue to improve in his anticipation of the passing lines, while maintaining his aggressive nature. This will lead to scores in transition and big numbers.

    Numbers that will play a major factor once the All-Star reserves are selected.


    Blake Griffin, Los Angeles Clippers

    There will inevitably be some outrage over the fact that Blake Griffin is not starting the All-Star Game. This, however, is merely a product of the fact that Kevin Love is finally receiving the attention he deserves.

    Blake Griffin will make another All-Star team due to his explosiveness, big time dunking ability and freakish athleticism. He'll also find his name on the roster because of the fact that his game is constantly evolving. Most important of all to voters, however, will be the fact that Griffin can score and rebound like there's no tomorrow.

    Even if he can't block a shot, he can throw down 10 at any given minute.


    Dirk Nowitzki, Dallas Mavericks

    Dirk Nowitzki isn't done just yet, folks.

    While the Dallas Mavericks have been severely depleted by free agency, Dirk Nowitzki may actually be in a better place now. His supporting cast has been broken up, although each member was well over 30 years old. Now, the Mavs have a strong group of young players to support Nowitzki's title quest.

    Regardless of how close Nowitzki ends up coming to a title, his numbers will be tremendous. This will lead to votes by fans and undeniable interest from his peers. One way or another, Dirk Nowitzki will make this team.

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