One of the countless contenders to become a 2013 NBA All-Star reserve is Philadelphia 76ers point guard Jrue Holiday. With his exceptional production but underwhelming team win-loss record, he has become one of the polarizing candidates in the league.
The truth of the matter is, Holiday is a no-brainer pick for the Eastern Conference All-Star reserves.
During his most recent outing, Holiday led the Sixers into battle with their division rival Toronto Raptors. During the game, Holiday dazzled everyone in attendance by with numbers and late-game heroics.
Holiday finished with 33 points, 14 assists, five rebounds and three steals. As the video placed below will display, he also tied the game with just 1.1 seconds remaining.
All-Star-caliber numbers and a history of clutch performances. What more do you need?
For some, this is a selection that no one should oppose. After all, Holiday is producing at a similar or higher rate than those that are classified as "elite."
Unfortunately, there are the select few that have their doubts.
For those that are uncertain, allow the following pieces of information sink in and appeal to your unconvinced mind. Upon the realization of these truths, you will agree with the leading Rookie of the Year candidate.
Damian Lillard had the following to say:
If jrue holiday isn't a all star then I don't know what is lol— Damian Lillard (@Dame_Lillard) January 19, 2013
All-Star bound or robbed of what he deserves.
By the Numbers: Individual
Thus far in 2012-13, Jrue Holiday has 10 double-doubles and one triple-double. Rajon Rondo is the only other point guard with at least 10 double-doubles and one triple-double.
Rondo is a starter for the Eastern Conference All-Stars.
Holiday is averaging 19.0 points, 8.8 assists, 4.2 rebounds and 1.4 steals per game. Holiday is also shooting 37.5 percent from beyond the arc, thus rounding off what could be a legendary season.
Should he finish the season with said averages, Holiday would be the 19th player in NBA history to average at least 19.0 points, 8.5 assists and 4.0 rebounds simultaneously (via Basketball-Reference).
Furthermore, he'd become the 13th player in league history to average at least 19.0 points, 8.5 assists, 4.0 rebounds and 1.0 steals (via Basketball-Reference). The NBA first began keeping track of steals during the 1973-74 season.
With this in mind, one would be hard-pressed to justify excluding Holiday from an All-Star roster.
Lost Without Jrue
To paraphrase the master serenader Robin Thicke, the Philadelphia 76ers have been "lost without Jrue."
Thus far in 2012-13, the Sixers are averaging 93.1 points scored and 96.1 points allowed per 48 minutes when Jrue Holiday is on the floor. When Holiday is on the bench, they're posting 90.2 points for and 98.0 points against.
In reference to what was previously stated, the Sixers would be '"worst in the league' bad" without Holiday.
For further evidence, note that the 76ers are 0-4 when Holiday does not play. Their average margin of defeat during those games is 13.0 points.
The Sixers are 17-19 when Holiday is playing.
For further perspective, second on Philadelphia's depth chart is Royal Ivey. Ivey has career-best averages of 5.6 points and 2.1 assists.
As great a veteran presence as he may be, there is no comparison.
The 76ers may not be performing at a postseason-caliber level, but they've also been without Andrew Bynum for the duration of the season. In his absence, Holiday has kept Philly within striking distance of the eighth seed in the Eastern Conference.
Without him, they may be competing for the top seed in the 2013 NBA draft.
If we're recognizing individual achievements, there are few better than Holiday. For that reason, it would be criminal for the Eastern Conference to ignore his elite-level play.
This one should be a no-brainer.
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