NBA All-Star Roster 2012: Dirk Nowitzki and Slumping Stars Who Don't Belong

Eric Ball@@BigLeagueEballFeatured ColumnistFebruary 9, 2012

NBA All-Star Roster 2012: Dirk Nowitzki and Slumping Stars Who Don't Belong

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    The NBA All-Star game is a way for stars of the past to get a shot of confidence as they get voted to the team for the umpteenth time.

    It’s the ego boost they need to falsely remind them they are among the best 24 players in the league. Problem is, they haven’t been for the last few years and keep going because they are a recognizable name on the ballot for fans that don’t do their research.

    Because let’s face it, how many fans really know about the magnificent seasons LaMarcus Aldridge, DeMarcus Cousins and Ty Lawson are having?

    The All-Star game is all about stars and big names first and talent second, and the coaches who pick the reserves know this.

    So when TNT announces the reserves for this year’s game Thursday night, here are five guys that deserve to be left out, but will more than likely end up getting the nod to Orlando based off their work in the last decade.

1. Tim Duncan: San Antonio Spurs (13-Time All-Star)

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    Duncan is shooting his lowest percentage of his career (47.5) and is getting phased out as a go-to offensive player on the squad.

    His defense is still above-average, but that’s the problem with one of the all-time greats at this point; he is becoming a one-dimensional player. I’m not going to call him a liability on offense just yet, but that’s the direction we are heading in.

    The young whipper snappers can jump over a car while Duncan struggles to jump over a textbook. 

2. Dirk Nowitzki: Dallas Mavericks (10-time All-Star)

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    Fresh off being the Finals MVP, Dirk celebrated a bit too hard this summer. He had to sit out for four games in a lockout-shortened season because of knee and conditioning issues.

    Nowitzki is currently hitting an ugly 21 percent of his threes and is on pace to register his lowest point (17.6) and rebounding (5.6) totals since his second year in the league.

    Dirk will likely get in because he owned last summer, but if we are strictly going by this year’s numbers Nowitzki doesn’t deserve to go.

    Especially over Aldridge. 

3. Kevin Garnett: Boston Celtics (14-time All-Star)

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    KG is extremely familiar with making the midseason classic and will likely be grandfathered in one final time, but boy does he not deserve it.

    His 14 points and 7.3 rebounds are a bit misleading. I’d guesstimate that roughly 35 percent of Garnett’s points are easy layups set up by the brilliance of Rajon Rondo, and he is a decent rebounder by default because of the lack of bigs in Boston.

    Garnett hasn’t been playing at an All-Star level ever since his serious knee surgery, but will make the squad in name only. 

4. Amar'e Stoudemire: New York Knicks (6-Time All-Star)

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    It just hasn’t been Stoudemire’s year. He is experiencing a rather painful adjustment to being Carmelo Anthony’s sidekick. Because of that his numbers are down across the board, and his team has been one big disappointment (Linsanity aside).

    18.1 points and eight rebounds is solid, but it’s not All-Star worthy. Stoudemire is capable of much more, but will likely get the nod because of the market he plays in. 

5. Ray Allen: Boston Celtics (10-time All-Star)

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    The one-time best shooter in the league is still connecting on 52 percent of his three-pointers, but that’s about all he’s good for at this point.

    14.9 points, 2.9 rebounds and 2.8 assists is decent numbers, especially for a 36-year-old, but that doesn’t mean he deserves to go over a guy like Brandon Jennings, who is currently the third-leading scorer in the East (18.9) among guards.


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