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Thunders’ Russell Westbrook an easy pick
Posted By HOOPSWORLD On January 24, 2013 @ 7:00 am In All,Wirenews | Comments Disabled
by Sam Amick, USA TODAY Sports
The NBA All-Star reserves will be announced at 7 p.m. ET today on TNT. USA TODAY Sports’ Sam Amick and Jeff Zillgitt looks at the numbers and performances to tell you who should be on the teams.
Joakim Noah, Bulls C – Knicks center Tyson Chandler loses out here because of Garnett’s undeserving inclusion, but Noah gets the nod because the Bulls’ defense is far more imposing than that of the Knicks (ranked third in defensive rating compared to 15th). He’s averaging 12.2 points, 10.7 rebounds and 2.1 blocks.
Brook Lopez, Nets C – The fact that the Nets went 2-5 when Lopez was out with a foot injury was evidence enough of his worth. After an offseason in which his name may as well have been the-guy-who-will-be-traded-for-Dwight-Howard, Lopez – who is averaging 18.5 points, 7.4 rebounds and 2.1 blocks per game – has been tremendous.
Chris Bosh, Heat F – It could be argued that the Heat don’t deserve three spots because of their defensive declines, but it’s too hard to ignore the efficiency of Bosh’s game (17.5 points per game onn 54.5 % shooting). What’s more, his blocks per game have increased from 0.8 last season to 1.4.
Paul George, Pacers SF – With Danny Granger out for the season, George has stepped in and played every bit like the star he’s en route to becoming. His two-way impact is rare and Indiana being third in the Eastern Conference.
Paul Pierce, Celtics SF – All-star voting is never fair, and so it is that the Celtics get two spots despite the fact that they’ve been underwhelming all season long. But since Pierce doesn’t share positions with Garnett, he doesn’t pay the sort of price that Chandler did. In all, the 35-year-old is averaging 18.9 points, 5.7 rebounds and 3.9 assists while playing at a far more steady pace than his teammates.
Kyrie Irving, Cavaliers PG – Irving will likely be here for years to come, but the subpar play of Brooklyn’s Deron Williams opened the door this season. It’s rare for a player on such a bad team to be invited to this … [For more on Thunders' Russell Westbrook an easy pick, click here.]
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