A bizarre NBA All-Star Recreation voting rule goes to spoil the East beginning lineup

The 4 finest gamers within the Jap Convention are Giannis Antetokounmpo, Kevin Durant, Joel Embiid, and Jayson Tatum, in some order. Sadly, a kind of gamers goes to be coming off the bench within the 2023 All-Star Recreation whereas a much less deserving participant begins as a result of a foolish rule within the voting course of.

The NBA decided that the league has to start out two guards and three frontcourt gamers from every convention. Then the league decided what place every participant performs on the poll. A few of these positional designations don’t make a lot sense — like DeMar DeRozan being listed as a guard for Chicago regardless of logging 0 % of his minutes at both backcourt spot this season in accordance with basketball-reference. As an alternative, DeRozan has spent 59 % of his time at small ahead, 39 % of his time at energy ahead, and two % of his time at middle. That’s only one instance — there are related instances all around the poll.

On the Jap Convention poll, all of Antetokounmpo, Durant, Embiid, and Tatum are listed as entrance courtroom gamers. Which means considered one of them will come off the bench whereas a much less deserving participant begins. Right here’s the have a look at the newest vote — which might have Embiid coming off the bench.

Replace: The All-Star Recreation rosters are out, and Embiid will come off the bench.

Followers aren’t solely liable for selecting the starters. The starters are decided by 50 % fan vote, 25 % media vote, and 25 % participant vote. There’s likelihood Embiid nonetheless begins even when he is available in fourth within the remaining fan vote, however that solely means another person deserving is coming off the bench.

Perhaps guidelines like this one made extra sense when gamers had been extra tied to positions, however at this level the sport has been “positionless” for a minimum of half a decade. Most gamers alternate between completely different positions inside video games. Nowadays, one of the best participant on the crew often performs with the ball of their palms, making them the de facto level guard even when they’re defending one other place.

Take Tatum, for instance. He’s second on the Celtics in assists this 12 months, and simply has the very best utilization price on the crew at 33 %. On so many possessions, Tatum is Boston’s offensive initiator and is performing like a guard.

Do we actually want to take a seat a deserving participant due to the ‘sanctity’ of positions? C’mon. Whereas considered one of Antetokounmpo, Durant, Embiid, and Tatum comes off the bench, somebody like Kyrie Irving, Tyrese Haliburton, or Jaylen Brown goes to start out. That’s ridiculous.

That is what the Jap Convention beginning lineup ought to appear to be for the All-Star Recreation in Utah:

  • Joel Embiid
  • Giannis Antetokounmpo
  • Kevin Durant
  • Jayson Tatum
  • Donovan Mitchell

That is simple, however the NBA’s arcane guidelines make it not possible. There must be a greater manner for this method to work. Right here’s one thought: simply remove positions altogether.

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