The game is changing. The word “position-less” has been a trending word throughout the last few years in the basketball world. So why are our All-Star and All-NBA teams failing to keep up?
The Importance of Abandonment
After the fan vote that decides the starting lineups of the All-Star teams, it’s up to the coaches to vote in the reserves. The catch is that they must vote for two guards, three forwards, and two wild cards.
“I argued this, and I lost, in the competition committee”, said Rivers. “I thought after the starters, there shouldn’t be any positions. If seven guards should make the team, seven guards should make the team. They were worried how the game would look, and I said, they’ll figure it out.”
How the game would look, seriously? The game has looked awful for years regardless of having the proper positions on the floor at once. Giving deserving players a spot on these prestigious rosters should outweigh the concern that there will be too many players in the front row of the team photo.
But where the positions are a bigger issue is on the All-NBA teams. In recent years, requiring three centers to be added was taking away spots from more deserving players.
Are Centers Coming Back?
Karl Anthony-Towns, Kristaps Porzingis, and Joel Embiid are all coming into their own. Along with the likes of Anthony Davis, DeMarcus Cousins, and Rudy Gobert, the maximum of three centers is too limiting for the All-NBA team. It’s not like these teams play each other either, so the need for positions has even less value.
The Always Evolving Game
Simply put, the three All-NBA teams need to be position-less and include the 15 best players from that season. In a day where we celebrate the versatility of players, it doesn’t make any sense to box them back up into specific positions to name them to a team. Especially when these selections hold a lot of importance.
If Paul George and Gordon Hayward would have made any of the All-NBA teams last year they would have qualified for huge paydays from their former teams. Missing one of these All-NBA teams due to the requirement to add a player of a different position is unfair to the players as well as their teams.
Even making the All-Star team is important for players. Being snubbed on an All-Star team is not only frustrating for players at the moment, but can also effect how their career is remembered. A player that is on the border line of making the Hall of Fame could potentially be passed on. A player just as easily could have made it with a few more All-Star selections to their resume.
No matter how you slice it, the most fair way to name the All-Star and All-NBA teams is to do it without position requirements. Anything less is cheating the players, fans, and organizations.
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