The fans have spoken. Here are the East and West starting lineups for the 2013 NBA All-Star game.
Hoopsvibe's quick call: Most of these ballers deserved it, but a few are questionable.
This year's NBA All-Star game will be played in Houston's Toyota Center and is set for February 17th. Here are the starting lineups for each squad:
We'll start with the East...
Lebron James - Miami Heat
James is having another amazing season. Let's face it, whether you like him or not, Lebron is a beast. Averaging 26.3 points, 8.1 rebounds and 7 assists per game, he does everything on the court and virtually plays every position. He's close to averaging a triple-double, and that's just insane. All-Star Game starting lineup status: Deserved.
Dwyane Wade - Miami Heat
James' teammate in Miami, despite being injured throughout last season, is definitely having an All-Star starter-type season. Wade is shooting better than 50% from the field and averaging 20.1 ppg, 4.4 apg, and 4.6 rpg. All-Star Game starting lineup status: Deserved
Rajon Rondo - Boston Celtics
Punk on the court or not, Rondo is an All-Star starter. He runs the show for the Celtics and is pretty much the ideal point guard. He can score, averaging 13 points per game this season. Despite not being the tallest point guard, he hauls in over 5 rebounds per game. But it's his ridiculous 11.2 assists per game average that sets him apart. All-Star Game starting lineup status: Deserved.
Kevin Garnett - Boston Celtics
Garnett has been a dominant force in the NBA for a while now, but I'm not sure he should be a starter for the All-Star team this year. He's putting up decent numbers with 14.6 points, 7 rebounds, and 2.1 assists per game. But for a guy that's almost seven feet, less than a block per game (he averages .8) is unimpressive. Plus, the Celtics haven't been that great. We probably could have made a strong case for guys like Joakim Noah or Tyson Chandler. All-Star Game starting lineup status: Questionable.
Carmelo Anthony - New York Knicks
Anthony is definitely a starter for the East this year. He's been one of the hottest players in the game the first half of this season, and his 29.2 points per game average makes him the league's second leading scorer, behind only Kobe Bryant. He also adds 6.1 rebounds and 2.5 assists each game. All-Star Game starting lineup status: Deserved
Kobe Bryant - Los Angeles Lakers
Kobe will be starting for the West in the All-Star Game for the 15th consecutive season, and that's an NBA record. He currently leads the league in scoring with 29.7 points per game and that's extremely impressive considering he's 34 years old and gets double and triple teamed every night. He also averages 4.9 rebounds and 4.7 assists per contest. All-Star Game starting lineup status: Deserved.
Dwight Howard - Los Angeles Lakers
Given the NBA has done away with the center position in the All-Star lineup, I'm not so sure Dwight should be a starter. Is he an All-Star? Absolutely. He's averaging 17.7 points per game. Is he one of the best big men in the league? No question. He brings in 12.7 rebounds per game. But what about guys like Tim Duncan and David Lee, who are actually on winning teams and putting up similar numbers? All-Star Game starting lineup status: Questionable.
Blake Griffin - Los Angeles Lakers
Griffin is definitely one of the most athletic big men the game has ever seen and his commercials on TV are hilarious. ("Stop wearing jean shorts.") He's averaging 17.8 points, 8.3 rebounds, and 3.3 assists per game this season and being that the Clippers are currently in first place in their division and tied for Oklahoma City for most wins so far this season, Griffin should be a starter. He's an integral part of a team that's winning games. All-Star Game starting lineup status: Deserved.
Chris Paul - Los Angeles Lakers
Paul and Rondo have been the league's best point guards this year. Not only does CP3 average 16.8 points, 9.7 assists, and 3.5 rebounds per game, but he's also been a 90% free-throw shooter. Not to mention, he rocks about a 5 to 1 assist to turnover ratio. He's without question one of the main reasons the Clippers are in 1st place. All-Star Game starting lineup status: Deserved.
Kevin Durant - Oklahoma City Thunder
Watching Kevin Durant play basketball sometimes makes me feel like I'm watching the ballet. His game is so smooth, it almost looks effortless. It's like he was built to play basketball. He's averaging 28.7 points (3rd best in the NBA), 7.5 rebounds, 4.2 assists, 1.6 steals, and 1.3 blocks per game for the Thunder this year, and half the time he doesn't even break a sweat. All-Star Game starting lineup status: Deserved.
Interesting note: Both starting lineups have four players from two of the same teams. Really goes to show how "Big-Threes" are coming to dominate the game.
(**Author's note** The article was written and posted before Durant went for 52 points In the Thunder's victory over the Mavs Friday night. The 52 he scored made his season average 29.3 ppg, surpassing Carmelo Anthony for second-place in the league in scoring. The Thunder's win also took them to 32-8 overall, giving them more wins than any other team so far this year.)
But what do you think, Hoopsvibers?? Who should be starting in this year's All-Star Game? Leave us your thoughts below!
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