Introducing Your First-Time NBA All-Stars

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Introducing Your First-Time NBA All-Stars
Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Now that the drama of the NBA All-Star fan votes and coaches' selections is over, let the second-guessing begin.

The Western Conference reserves appeared largely set, although there were a few noticeable omissions.

Out East, though, it was anyone's guess as to who would emerge from a crowded group of worthy candidates.

What's too often lost at this stage in the All-Star process, though, is the recognition for one of the game's toughest, most gratifying individual achievements: punching an All-Star ticket for the first time.

There's a reason for so many repeat performers in the All-Star Game.

For starters, talent obviously plays a big role. When players show the ability to dominate competition over a sustained period of time, it's not a quality that they typically lose overnight (although, it does happen; see: Evans, Tyreke).

But there's a relative ease that emerges in the voting process if you can vote for a guy who's been there before. It can often wind up the deciding factor between a declining star and an up-and-comer who's still making his name known on the national stage.

So before we worry too much about who didn't make it, here's a tip of the cap for the six players set to make their All-Star debuts.

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