Today’s the day. In about less than an hour, we’ll find out if any of our beloved Atlanta Hawks players made it to the All-star game this season. There’s really only two Hawks players that are possibilities of making it (Joe Johnson and Josh Smith), but will either of them make it? Do both make it?
It’s all up to the coaches if either of them do. Did either of them impress enough (Eastern Conference) head coaches? Votes were finalized on Tuesday, so yesterday’s big performance from both Joe Johnson & Josh Smith won’t play a factor to the votes.
The only correct way to analyze and predict if either make it is to simply come up with my very own list of players that I think will make it.
There are so many candidates (16 candidates in my opinion) to make it, but only 7 spots are available. These are the players I think should be considered (in order of their team’s record).
- Luol Deng (Bulls)
- Chris Bosh (Heat)
- Andre Iguodala (76ers)
- Lou Williams (76ers)
- Roy Hibbert (Pacers)
- Danny Granger (Pacers)
- Joe Johnson (Hawks)
- Josh Smith (Hawks)
- Kevin Garnett (Celtics)
- Paul Pierce (Celtics)
- Ray Allen (Celtics)
- Rajon Rondo (Celtics)
- Brandon Jennings (Bucks)
- Kyrie Irving (Cavaliers)
- Deron Williams (Nets)
- Greg Monroe (Pistons)
The No Brainers Category
There’s really only one no brainer and one lock to make it in my opinion, and that’s Chris Bosh.
His team has the wins, he has the stats, and he has the reputation. There’s no way he doesn’t make it.
Six spots left…
The “They better make it!” Category
Joe Johnson. As most of you Hawks fans know, Joe Johnson and Josh Smith have really carried this Atlanta Hawks team ever since Al Horford went out. When Horford went out, a lot speculated that the Hawks would fall off the page, but here we are right and the Hawks are still in the running for a homecourt advantage seed. They’re only 1 game behind from the 3rd seed and 2 games behind from the 2nd seed. Joe had a streak of 3 bad games, but I don’t think that will be enough to take him out. Hawks will have at least one player in the All-star game based on the fact that they’ve surpassed expectations this season, and I think coaches would vote for Joe Johnson before they would vote Josh Smith just because Joe is the leading scorer, has been the “team leader” for years, and has made it to the All-star game multiple times before. Congrats Joe.
Andre Iguodala. Has to make it this season. Philadelphia is a top team in the Eastern Conference this season. Third best team in the East (I’ll say 4th if Horford was healthy) in my opinion. I think coaches would vote for at least one 76ers player to make it, and I think if coaches had to choose between Iguodala and Lou Williams, they would go with Iguodala. Just like Joe Johnson, Iguodala has been known to be the “team leader” for so many seasons now. One 76ers player will at least make it, and congratulations to Iguodala for making his 1st All-Star appearance!
4 spots left….
The “I’m pretty sure they will…” Category
Roy Hibbert. One bad thing about the Eastern Conference, no centers at all. Not to take anything away from Al Horford, but him playing in the Eastern Conference has played a huge part on him playing in the All-star game the past 2 games. But with Horford out now, the choices for a backup Center gets more thin. There’s only two Centers that deserve consideration, Roy Hibbert and Greg Monroe. I’m pretty sure coaches would opt to go with Roy Hibbert, just because he’s on the better team and the fact that he’s been in the league longer. Congrats Roy, another first timer!
3 spots left…12 possible candidates. Let’s eliminate some to narrow it down.
The “Sorry, maybe next year…” Category
Greg Monroe. Sorry, your team just doesn’t have the record.
Kyrie Irving. His team doesn’t have the record, and he’s a rookie. Got to award the veterans first. He’ll get your turn.
Ray Allen & Kevin Garnett. Streak ends here KG, sorry. Your team doesn’t deserve more than two all-stars (only 1 in my opinion), and coaches would vote for Rondo and Pierce before they vote for Allen or KG.
Deron Williams. He’s the 2nd best PG in my eyes, but winning plays a factor in making it. I don’t think coaches will vote for him.
So 3 spots left, only 7 candidates left ( Luol Deng, Lou Williams, Danny Granger, Josh Smith, Paul Pierce, Rajon Rondo, and Brandon Jennings).
Lou Williams vs Rondo vs Jennings
One of the three make it. Rajon Rondo has missed (8) games due to injury, but Boston does deserve one and I would rather have Rondo than Pierce. Lou Williams is the leading scorer for the 3rd best team in the East right now, but I think that has more to do with the team’s play than his individual effort. Brandon Jennings is not having a bad year either, but his reputation hurts him. I don’t think coaches would vote for Jennings before they vote for Rondo.
Luol Deng vs Josh Smith vs Danny Granger vs Paul Pierce
All 4 of these players already have one teammate (in my opinion) going to the All-star game, and only two of the 4 can make it. Out of the 4, Luol Deng probably has the highest chance of making it. He was out for 7 games with an injury, but I think coaches will reward the Chicago Bulls two players and Deng has been the clear cut #2 player for the best team in the East (record wise). He’s averaging career highs in rebound and steals too. Solid season and he won’t be snubbed this time. Congrats.
I think the last forward spot will actually go to Josh Smith. Call me bias but I think he has had a better impact on his team than Granger or Pierce has this season. Pierce’s team has under performed and Danny Granger has the better talent on his team since Al Horford is out. Not to mention, Josh Smith just has better statistics than them.
So to recap, I have both Joe Johnson and Josh Smith making the Allstar team. I also have Chris Bosh, Andre Iguodala, Roy Hibbert, Rajon Rondo, and Luol Deng making it.