It seems every year in the NBA somebody is snubbed from the All-Star Game.
That was no different on Thursday when Golden State Warriors point guard Stephen Curry and Brooklyn Nets center Brook Lopez were left off the rosters of the Western Conference and Eastern Conference respectively.
Instead, less-deserving players like LaMarcus Aldridge and Luol Deng were plopped on each conference's roster, proving emphatically that the All-Star selection process is nothing but a popularity contest.
Before the reserves were announced on Thursday, Curry was averaging 20.9 points, 6.6 assists, 4.1 rebounds and 1.7 steals. He was averaging 45 percent from downtown and 89 percent from the free-throw line.
The Warriors were also 26-15 and in position to make the playoffs.
You only have to look at how Golden State plays without Curry at the helm to know how valuable he is to the team. You can also look at the fact that Curry's posted a PER of 19.71 this season, which ranks fifth among point guards who have averaged 30 minutes or more this season (via Hoopdata.com). The four point guards ahead of Curry using that criteria? Chris Paul, Russell Westbrook, Tony Parker and Kyrie Irving.
Then you have the snub of Lopez.
Lopez has averaged 18.6 points, 7.4 rebounds and 2.1 blocks this season. Those may not seem like overly impressive numbers, but his PER of 25.04 (fifth among all players averaging at least 25 minutes) tells the true story. The four players ahead of him using that criteria? LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Chris Paul and Carmelo Anthony.
It's also not a coincidence that the Nets are 26-17, and Lopez has an extremely high usage rate (percentage of offensive possessions used by a player during his time in the game).
Lopez ranks 10th in usage rate among players averaging at least 25 minutes. In turn, the Nets have been able to post a winning record, despite the struggles of Deron Williams, who was supposed to be their star player.
It should have been a given that Curry and Lopez would be headed to Houston this year. Instead, it's more of the same—worthy players getting snubbed.
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