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NBA All-Star Snubs: Who Are 2023 Salt Lake City NBA All-Star Game’s Biggest Snubs From Starting Berths?

Amulya Shekhar

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With the announcement of this year’s starters for the All-Star game, discussion about NBA All-Star snubs is reaching a fever pitch.

LeBron James was voted in as a captain for the 6th straight year in a row. The Lakers legend has accumulated the highest votes among all players for a record 10th time, overtaking Michael Jordan.

Giannis Antetokounmpo, meanwhile, edged out Kevin Durant with a late surge to be voted as the Eastern All-Star Captain. The Greek Freak has been named captain for the 3rd time since the format change for 2017-18.

Kyrie Irving and Donovan Mitchell round out the guard spots from the Eastern Conference – probably the least competitive positions. Jayson Tatum and Kevin Durant assume the other starters’ berths alongside Giannis from the East.

Also Read – Kevin Durant All-Star Game Stats — Numbers Behind the Slim Reaper’s 12 Appearances In the Annual Exhibit

Stephen Curry and Luka Doncic were voted in as the Western Conference starters from the guard position. Nikola Jokic and Zion Williamson are the 2 frontcourt players voted alongside LeBron as the frontcourt starters out West.

There is quite a bit of contentiousness regarding All-Star voting every year, and this season is no different. We take a look at the performances from arguably the 4 biggest snubs from the starting berths.

NBA All-Star Snubs

#1 Joel Embiid

Faced with stiff competition from 2 MVP frontrunners and another former MVP, Embiid is the biggest of the NBA All-Star snubs from the starting berths this year.

The big man is averaging a career-high and league-leading 33.4 points per game this season. He also snags nearly 10 rebounds per game while adding elite defense and anchoring a top-5 defensive team in the NBA.

Also Read – Despite Having $196 Million, Joel Embiid Refuses To Sign An Agent To Negotiate His Deals

The game seems to be coming easier for the big man in his 9th NBA season than ever before. Partnered with James Harden, Embiid is taking the 76ers’ season up a notch, game by game.

#2 Domantas Sabonis

The arrival of Sabonis at Sacramento is one of the primary reasons for the sea change in the Kings’ fortunes this season. Having missed the playoffs for 16 straight seasons – the longest playoff drought in league history – the Kings currently sit pretty at the 3rd spot in the West.

Sabonis has been averaging 18.3 points, 12.4 rebounds and a career-high 7.3 assists per game this season. His points are coming at a career high 60.3% clip from the field.

While De’Aaron Fox is their most reliable scorer and performer during clutch, Sabonis is responsible for getting the Kings’ role players going, finding them on cuts and facilitating their outside shots.

His defense has also been trending upward this year, although there still is fair room for improvement. Overall, Sabonis’ role in getting the Kings to an enviable seed should not have been overlooked.

#3 Shai Gilgeous-Alexander

The Oklahoma City Thunder were expected to endure another dastardly losing season in their tanking attempts this year. However, led by Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, they are currently in contention for a play-in berth.

SGA has been on an absolute tear this season. The Canadian is averaging nearly 31 points per game on the highest efficiency of his career (51.1% from the field).

Shai is also one of the league leaders in free throws, making over 90% of his 10.2 attempts per game. His driving game is helping Josh Giddey and other Thunder players find their spots on offense. He’s also been a great leader and clutch performer, netting them several wins.

Also Read – “You’ve Gotta Put Some Respect on Shai Gilgeous-Alexander”: Kevin Garnett Wants 6ft 6’ Thunder Guard’s Name in MVP Race Already

Shai’s bid should also be based on the fact that Stephen Curry was out for a significant part of the season thus far. However, it’s well-nigh impossible to dislodge Steph from his perch as the most popular NBA guard. This makes Shai yet another undeserved NBA All-Star snub.

#4 James Harden

Leading the league in assists per game for the 2nd time in his career, Harden has successfully morphed into a playmaker-first role alongside Embiid in the Sixers’ offense.

One thing voters will have noted is his obvious drop in athleticism and speed this season. However, that hasn’t stopped Harden from wreaking havoc on opposition defenses with his expert pick-and-roll play.

Averaging 22 points and nearly 11 assists per game this year, Harden would’ve normally been a shoo-in. However, the popularity of Kyrie Irving means that Harden can only be voted in as a reserve once again.

About the author

Amulya Shekhar

Amulya Shekhar


Amulya Shekhar is a sports junkie who thrives on the thrills and frills of live sports action across basketball, football (the American variant works too), parkour, adventure sports. He believes sports connect us to our best selves, and he hopes to help people experience sports more holistically.

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