Why It’s A Surprise That Tim Duncan Was Selected To All-Star Game?

By George Middleton

I will start this piece by stating the obvious, “Tim Duncan has had an unbelievable NBA career”.

Duncan is a 15 time all-star, five time NBA champion, two time MVP, three time Finals MVP…. it goes on.

This season Duncan has been everything the Spurs have asked for and more. He is averaging 14.7 points, 10.1 rebounds, 3.1 assists and 2 blocks. He is averaging more rebounds and assists than he has in four years.

Does that mean he should be an all-star? The answer is simple, No!

The Spurs have been a playoff team all season, but being tied for sixth place, with the Houston Rockets doesn’t mean that a player from their team must be an all-star. The Spurs have won 7 of 8 games, if it wasn’t for that they could well be in eighth place.

In past seasons, the Spurs would be in the top 4 comfortably, which made it acceptable for them to have two all-stars, despite neither Duncan and Parker dominating like most all-star selection. This season the Spurs are just a good team in a great conference.

Tim Duncan isn’t deserving of the all-star nod, because of who was left out.

Two names: DeMarcus Cousins and Damian Lillard

Jan 19, 2015; Portland, OR, USA; Sacramento Kings center DeMarcus Cousins (15) posts up on Portland Trail Blazers center

Meyers Leonard

(11) during the first quarter at the Moda Center. Mandatory Credit: Craig Mitchelldyer-USA TODAY Sports

DeMarcus Cousins is the most dominant center in the NBA. Cousins isn’t the elite defender that Duncan, Anthony Davis or Marc Gasol are, but offensively he is a machine.

Cousins is averaging 23.8 points, 12.3 rebounds, 3.2 assists, 1.6 blocks and 1.4 steals. Those are numbers similar to those of Houston Rockets legend, Hakeem Olajuwon.

Yes, I know the Kings are nowhere to be found in the playoff race, but Cousins had the Kings playing well to start the season, before missing 10 games with viral meningitis. Besides, Cousins is better than Duncan in every major category, except blocks.

The next player that was left out was Lillard. Lillard was left out, due to the great point guards that made it (Stephen Curry, Russell Westbrook, Chris Paul). The Trail Blazers are tied for third place with a 32-14 record, which makes it hard to believe that one of the league’s best guards didn’t make the game.

Jan 21, 2015; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard (0) against the Phoenix Suns at US Airways Center. The Suns defeated the Blazers 118-113. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Lillard is averaging 21.8 points, 6.2 assists and 4.6 rebounds. He is one of the leagues best shooters in addition to being such a great point guard. He is tied for fifth with James Harden in three-point makes.

If the argument is that Cousins isn’t on a playoff team, the argument can’t be used with Lillard, who is turning his team into a championship contender alongside all-star teammate LaMarcus Aldridge.

Update: Cousins made it as Kobe Bryant‘s replacement, but it shouldn’t have come down to that.

Next: Tim Duncan: The Usual Suspect