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San Antonio Spurs: LaMarcus Aldridge deserves your All-Star vote

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PORTLAND, OR - DECEMBER 20: LaMarcus Aldridge #12 of the San Antonio Spurs looks on during the game against the Portland Trail Blazers on December 20, 2017 at the Moda Center Arena in Portland, Oregon. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2017 NBAE (Photo by Sam Forencich/NBAE via Getty Images)
PORTLAND, OR - DECEMBER 20: LaMarcus Aldridge #12 of the San Antonio Spurs looks on during the game against the Portland Trail Blazers on December 20, 2017 at the Moda Center Arena in Portland, Oregon. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2017 NBAE (Photo by Sam Forencich/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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NBA All-Star voting is underway, with San Antonio Spurs star LaMarcus Aldridge as the favorite to make the game.

The San Antonio Spurs tend to send at least one player to the annual NBA All-Star Game. From Tim Duncan to Tony Parker to Manu Ginobili, these players represented the Silver and Black, in the 2000’s, and into the early 2010’s. However, with Duncan retired and Parker and Ginobili past their primes, a new era of players received the chance to go to this mid-February game.

In 2016-17, Kawhi Leonard made the All-Star Game. It was one of many accolades he received that season, including third place in the MVP voting.

On Thursday, voting for the 2018 All-Star Game opened, allowing everyone to vote for their favorite players (or Spurs) for the game, which will take place at the Staples Center, home of the Los Angeles Lakers and Clippers, in Los Angeles, CA.

Of course, you can vote for everyone from Leonard to Matt Costello. Strangers thing have happened, but there’s little to no chance a Spur not named LaMarcus Aldridge makes it to Hollywood.

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Aldridge stepped in as the leading man for the Spurs, when Leonard suffered a quad injury in the offseason and wasn’t ready for the start of the season. The 32-year-old was criticized for his play in 2015-16 and 2016-17, despite receiving an All-Star spot in the former. 32 games into the 2017-18 season, it’s a different story, with numbers that brought back his Portland Trail Blazer days (21.9 points, 8.3 rebounds).

The fact the Spurs didn’t tumble without the Klaw was remarkable, too. They finished well above .500 before he returned, with Aldridge dominating the offense and acting as the team’s much-needed go-to player in this stretch.

This revitalized stretch of the season deserves to get Aldridge into the All-Star Game, with its unique format of no East and West in 2018. Instead, 24 players get chosen, with team captains designating them to one of two teams. That means the potential six-time All-Star could team with LeBron James, Kyrie Irving and James Harden. How about lining up with Joel Embiid?

Next: Top 25 players in Spurs history

Time remains for the vote, so cast it before the game on Feb. 18, 2018. Cast it for whoever you want. It can even be for Leonard, who only returned this month. Even for Joffrey Lauvergne. Make the vote matter, though, and hand it to Aldridge.

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