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Ray Allen Is Right: Fans Role in NBA All-Star Voting Should Be Limited

PHOENIX - FEBRUARY 15:  Allen Iverson #1 of the Eastern Conference looks across the court during the 58th NBA All-Star Game, part of 2009 NBA All-Star Weekend at US Airways Center on February 15, 2009 in Phoenix, Arizona.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
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A. Enslen ButlerContributor IJanuary 23, 2010

I am glad someone stepped forward about NBA All-Star Game voting.

Last week, the Boston Celtics' Ray Allen spoke out and argued that the fans' role in determining the starting lineup should be minimized. He believes that fans should get 50 percent of the vote, with the other 50 percent being divided between the media and the players.

Fans have been voting for the starters in the All-Star game for my entire life. But enough is enough.
There are always aging stars who get one (or two or five) more chance to be appreciated by fans. But that is not the meaning of the All-Star Game.
People call the All-Star game a "fans" game. It is.
It is for the fans to see the best players in the first half of a given NBA season.
No matter how you judge it, players like Houston's Tracy McGrady and Philadelphia's Allen Iverson do not come close to meeting that standard.
People compare the NBA All-Star game to the Major League Baseball All-Star Game, where the fans also vote for the starters. However, baseball requires one representative from each team.
Basketball does not have that rule. So Iverson (in the East) takes a roster spot from a deserving player. If McGrady made the team in the West, that meant another player would not be recognized.
Of course, the NBA is partly to blame here as well. The Association put Allen Iverson and Tracy McGrady on the ballot in the first place.
Ray Allen's idea allows the fans to have a large role in the decision. It also adds alternative opinions into the selections. The result is something we all want: a better game.
I am in favor of fan involvement. But not for fan anarchy.

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