The San Antonio Spurs did get one All-Star selection from this year’s team, but DeMar DeRozan also deserved a spot considering who was picked above him.
The San Antonio Spurs looked to have two borderline All-Stars on their team heading into the reserves selection show on Thursday night.
LaMarcus Aldridge had a very slow start to the season where he struggled to find his shot, but he’s been hot ever since the beginning of December and he’s put up some huge numbers while DeMar DeRozan has recently been sidelined.
DeRozan’s injury issues over the past couple of weeks may have played a factor in him getting left off of the team after being named an All-Star in each of the past three seasons.
DeRozan’s year has been the opposite of Aldridge’s as DeMar was a dark horse MVP candidate for the first two months of the season before cooling off dramatically this winter.
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Even with some uninspiring numbers and injuries to his knee and ankle, DeRozan deserved to make the team over Klay Thompson.
Klay has a slight edge in points per game, but DeRozan has been much more productive in the assist and rebound categories as he’s aked to carry a much larger load than Thompson.
DeMar has been in a major slump during the month of January with a true shooting percentage of just 44.9% in his last 11 games.
Thompson isn’t shooting the lights out with his lowest true shooting percentage since the 2013-14 season, but he still has DeRozan beat in that category because of DeMar’s recent form.
The trump card in this scenario is ESPN’s real plus-minus metric that attempts to assign value to a player for his contributions on both end of the floor while adjusting for competition.
DeRozan’s real plus-minus number of +0.51 ranks 14th among shooting guards while Klay’s real plus-minus of -0.6 ranks 28th.
Thompson’s All-Star stock gets a bump by playing on one of the greatest teams ever assembled while DeMar’s contributions have gone under the radar because his best work was done while football coverage still ruled the sports world in October and November.
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I don’t think either DeMar or Klay deserved to be in the game over Rudy Gobert, so it’s hard to call it a true All-Star snub.
However, DeRozan has been more instrumental to his team’s success than Klay has this season which should’ve earned DeMar an All-Star reserve spot.