The vast talent divide that separates the NBA's Eastern and Western Conferences only seems to be growing, and the 2014 All-Star Game is going to make that fact more obvious than ever.
Most of the discourse surrounding conference inequality focuses on how the East is likely going to send as many as six teams to the playoffs that wouldn't rank among the top 10 out West. That's patently unfair, and you can bet that Adam Silver is going to address it when he takes over the reins from David Stern.
More immediately, we're about to see a handful of All-Star-worthy players miss out on a trip to New Orleans in February—just because they happen to play in the wrong conference.
It doesn't have to be that way, though.
To illustrate that point, we've eliminated conferences and picked All-Star rosters based solely on merit. As a starting point, we'll split up LeBron James and Kevin Durant. From there, all we have to do is divide the talent evenly until we've filled out two rosters with 12 players each.
We'll keep the same positional rules that the league uses: two backcourt starters, three frontcourt starters, two backcourt reserves, three frontcourt reserves and two wild cards. Other than that, it's a free-for-all. Conferences don't matter, and the best 24 players in the league will be All-Stars.
Now we'll really see who deserves a trip to the Big Easy.