Trae Young finished the Atlanta Hawks’ 129-120 win over the Phoenix Suns with 32 points, 15 assists, and three steals. It was his 14th 30-point, 10-assist effort of the season, tying him with none other than Dallas Mavericks star Luks Doncic for most in the league, per Stathead.
Third place is a tie between Denver Nuggets star Nikola Jokic and Indiana Pacers guard Tyrese Haliburton with seven apiece.
The difference is, all of those players will be showcased during All-Star weekend. Young will not.
“I don’t really care about all that,” Young told Bally Sports’ Tabitha Turner in his walkoff interview on February 2. “I’m trying to win. My main focus is coming out here and trying to win. That’s been my focus since I got in the league. I always told myself everything is gonna take care of itself, and I just gotta let it continue to happen.”
Young, a two-time All-Star, has spoken candidly about his standing in the league, a hot topic amid a survey of a small group of anonymous NBA players who voted him the most “overrated” player.
He has openly said he didn’t expect to make it to All-Star weekend last season unless the fans voted him in. Young finished fifth among Eastern Conference backcourt players in the fan vote, missing the All-Star weekend festivities to fans' chagrin.
This season, though, he finished second only to still miss out on a spot.
Fan voting counts for 50% of a player’s overall tally, with player and media vote each counting for 25%. Milwaukee Bucks guard Damian Lillard made it over Young this season. He finished third in fan voting, but fourth and fifth in the other two categories in which Young placed sixth.
There is still an opportunity for Young to earn a trip as a replacement, potentially for injured New York Knicks star Julius Randle. Young has scoffed at that idea in past years.
But he’s apparently softened on that stance.
Hawks' Trae Young would accept invite to All-Star weekend as injury replacement
"Yeah, I mean, I would, instead of being selfish and like, an a****** towards it,” Young said, per Kevin Chouinard of NBA.com. “I realize I wouldn’t be representing just myself, so I would go.”
Young also expressed his “love” for the fans, but he declined to go too deep into how he felt about the snub. He has missed out each of the past two seasons despite leading the league in total points and total rebounds in 2021-22 and total assists in 2022-23.
The knock on his turnovers – he currently leads the league by a double-digit margin over Bucks star Giannis Antetkounmpo – is warranted.
But Young, who is on the smaller side in the NBA, has put forth strong efforts defensively, taking charges and getting steals.
This was the Hawks’ third straight win, maintaining their hold on the 10-seed and the final spot in the Play-In Tournament with 34 games to go in the regular season. It is only their third streak of at least three wins this season.
Next up, they host the Golden State Warriors, who will also be playing on the second leg of a back-to-back and coming off a win.
Atlanta closes out the homestand against the Los Angeles Clippers on February 5.