Western Conference Snubs are better than Eastern Conference Reserves

Published: February 4, 2011

So we now have the Eastern and Western All-Star rosters, and there’s something there that just flat out bothers me.  I take a look at the Eastern Conference All-Star reserves, and I can’t get away from the fact that the Western Conference snubs makes a better roster than those guys do.

Here’s the Eastern Conference Reserves as a 7-player team:

  • Starters: Al Horford, Chris Bosh, Paul Pierce, Ray Allen, Rajon Rondo
  • Reserves: Kevin Garnett, Joe Johnson.

The top Western Conference Snubs as a 7-player Team:

  • Starters: Zach Randolph, Kevin Love, LaMarcus Aldridge, Kevin Martin, Steve Nash
  • Reserves: Lamar Odom, Tony Parker.

Oh – and I left off David West and Monta Ellis. (I wanted Odom’s defensive versatility over West’s offense, and Parker and Martin are better shooters than Ellis)

So, if you taking out the fact that those four Celtics play together and would therefore have an advantage, just on plain talent, which team would you take in a head-to-head game?  Me?  I’d probably take the Western Conference snubs.

What’s more – if you swap the Celtics with, say, the Lakers, putting the Celtics in the Western Conference and the Lakers in the East – do four Celtics get into the All-Star Game?  Does even one? Your choices:

At forward/center: Tim Duncan, Pau Gasol, Blake Griffin, Kevin Love, Dirk Nowitzki, Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, Zach Randolph, David West, and Lamar Odom.

At guard: Manu Ginobili, Westbrook, Nash, Deron Williams, Kevin Martin, Rajon Rondo, Ray Allen, Tony Parker, and Monta Ellis.

Between those two lists, pick seven guys.  Hell, pick eight since in this scenario Kobe went east and out of the starting All-Star line-up.

Do you have any Celtics?   I don’t.  Almost the entire Eastern reserve squad wouldn’t make it – and we’re not even talking about the disappointing Joe Johnson appearing on that squad.

For debate purposes, I picked: Pau Gasol, Dirk Nowitzki, Blake Griffin, Russell Westbrook, Deron Williams, Kevin Love, Steve Nash and Tim Duncan.(Duncan by a hair over Garnett, who’s had injury problems)


  1. 42

    February 4, 2011 at 11:27 am

    The above is a portion of the reason I disregard all such things: All-x teams, MVP, x of the year.

    Eat me, okay?

    Just go win the damn game, jump around, and make me feel. I don’t care what I feel, just make me feel.

    I’m good at what I’m good at. You are the best in the world at this meaningless task. Nevertheless, you symbolize what can be achieved in the great game that is an otherwise cold world. Just do your best and win the damned game.

    Oh, alley-oops are nice.

    • 42

      February 4, 2011 at 11:31 am

      “Eat me” and the derision (punk band?) is directed at the awards, etc., not at Ryan or the article.

      Two snaps up in a circle for each!

  2. JaeAmazin

    February 4, 2011 at 11:36 am

    Dude Monta Ellis is Wayy better than Kevin Martin

  3. cmac81

    February 4, 2011 at 11:59 am

    Depends what you want. Ellis is a volume scorer while Martin is more efficient. On my day to day NBA team I would want Martin but for the all star game I would want Ellis. Personal preference really.

  4. Michael McNamara

    February 4, 2011 at 1:33 pm

    Those two teams of 7 play each other today and I will put everything I got on the East squad. The East have 5 guys (take out Johnson and Bosh) who are winners at multiple levels and do whatever it takes on to accomplish that goal- stats be damned.

    The West has 4 guys who get their numbers as looters in a riot and do not transfer their stats into wins. In fact, Odom is the best player on the West team IMO and he is on the bench. Surprise, surprise- I disagree with you on this one Ryan, but that is gonna happen a lot when you got a guy who values numbers debating a guy who could care less about that stuff.

    • Rohan

      February 4, 2011 at 2:16 pm

      I agree, the AS game should have been Spurs vs. Celtics

      • Mark

        February 4, 2011 at 6:17 pm

        Don’t forget Miami!

      • Rohan

        February 4, 2011 at 7:21 pm

        And put in Me-Bron and chr-I-sh Bosh? Are you kidding?

      • Mark

        February 4, 2011 at 10:21 pm

        uh, I meant the entire squad is chock full of Miami and Celtic players.

  5. DStarcer15

    February 4, 2011 at 4:48 pm

    Listen fellas,

    I am sick and tired of this all-of-a-sudden necessary factor that an All-Star HAS to be on a winning team. That’s a bunch of BS. Kevin Love is doing something noone has done since Moses freakin Malone and he’s getting left off for 85-year old Tim Duncan (the greatest PF of all-time, but not an All-Star anymore), Pau (who isn’t even the 2nd best player on his team, see Odom, Lamar), etc. If LaMarcus Aldridge (on a so-so Portland team), Steve Nash (still disgusting but undeserving this year) or even my boy David West gets in over Love, it’s a travesty. All-Stars get in for wow factor, which is essentially a popularity contest since a high-flyer like Griffin gets in over a gritty hard-worker like Love. Yes the Celts and Spurs are great TEAMS, but only Manu, Rondo, Pierce, and maybe Allen should be in (I put Boozer in as the other big man out east and Raymond Felton is an All-Star).

    As for Ryan’s scenario, give me Griffin, K-Love, Dirk and Odom (no joke) at forward and Westbrook, Manu, Rondo and…Monta Ellis (the guy is SO much fun to watch) at guard.

    • Brian

      February 5, 2011 at 12:52 pm

      Felton is not an allstar. He was before January, but he is in an up-tempo, 1 in 4 out, PG oriented offense. In any D’antoni offense the PG handles the ball 80% of the time and is almost strictly running high pick and rolls with shooters spreading the court. Any PG with any type of athleticism can put up good numbers in that offense. Look at what Duhon did in that system. He is barely an NBA level talent. I like Felton a lot, Im really not hating, I just dont think he is an allstar.

  6. Taquito

    February 4, 2011 at 5:13 pm

    having 4 celtics is ridiculous, then again the east stinks, and yeah i cant believe Love and Aldridge were snubbed and soft ass gasol got in

  7. JS

    February 4, 2011 at 5:59 pm

    well all four celtics are gritty players that work their ass off and deserve it like someone said above…If your talking about overall players that deserve it then all four celtics should. But rondo and kg shouldnt make it in the west but Pierce and Ray would IMO. Pierce is shooting over 50% from the field and Ray is shooting a ridiculous percentage 2 and both are playing some of the best defense in the league. KG shouldnt make it if your going on the fact that hes missed all of those games but other than that he anchors that defense and is efficient on offense in his limited minutes. All of those Western snubs beside Odom do not play any defense.

  8. G Dunn

    February 4, 2011 at 6:20 pm

    you need to watch Monte Ellis play before you snub him from the snub list… Ellis has the best mid-range jumper in the game and gets it off with ease.

    • Justin

      February 7, 2011 at 9:30 am

      Monta is far away from having the best mid-range jumper in the game

  9. m-W

    February 4, 2011 at 6:39 pm

    In the weaker east, I have no problems with 4 Celtics making it. But I am surprised, Ryan,you value Randoph and Aldridge Over DX. Just don’t see it. I’m building a team and need one if those three, I take David every time.

    • Monty'sDoghouse

      February 5, 2011 at 11:13 am

      Sorry bro. I agree with you on almost all things but I’d take Aldridge over West in a heartbeat.

  10. eric

    February 4, 2011 at 6:52 pm

    All NBA awards and all-start nominations are meaningless slop – too objective to be worth committing any serious thought to. Who gets to the playoffs and wins is all that matters in the NBA.

  11. elvis hayes

    February 4, 2011 at 9:46 pm

    I agree with the overall point of the article, but there is a mistake in the last part – you say in this exercise we are moving the Celtics west and the Lakers east – so why do you submit Gasol and Odom for consideration on your hypothetical all-star ballot? You picked Gasol on your team but as you mention with Kobe, he has “moved east” in this example…so the last spot should really be down to Pierce/Garnett/Randolph/West/Aldridge (who was not mentioned). And I love Nash but you probably would have to give the nod to Rondo over him.

  12. Ashrit

    February 5, 2011 at 3:15 am

    This article kind of just offends me. So lets get this straight — none of the 4 celtics are All stars but they are on the best team in the NBA (no offense to the Spurs)? So I guess all these other “amazing” all stars can’t beat a team with 0 all stars? Look Kevin Love puts up great numbers on an awful team. But if you are a really good player on an awful team, you still win games. Last year the hornets without Chris Paul for the majority of the season treaded water and stayed close to .500. When Minnesota primarily was just KG, they still made the playoffs several years and when Kobe had 0 help they were either a playoff team or close to it.

    I don’t feel bad for guys that put up amazing numbers, but whose teams cant buy a game. Minnesota has won 11 games and lost 38 games — NO player on that team is an all star. They’ve beaten maybe 2 playoff teams (NO, New York) all year.

    The East reserve team would flat our crush the west team. Rando and Pierce can put up disgusting numbers on their own — but they are prioritizing winning. I don’t even like the Celtics, but I can recognize that there is more to basketball than stats. Do you think the Lakers would rather have Odom or KG/Pierce — no question, they’d pick KG/Pierce.

  13. Dontae

    February 5, 2011 at 11:15 am

    I don’t think Tony Parker is a better shooter than Ellis he just plays more fundamental. I would take Ellis over parker any day.

  14. Anaheim Amigos

    February 5, 2011 at 11:54 am

    First, a disclaimer: I’m a Celtics’ fan.

    If somehow there needed to be fewer Celtics on the team, Ray and Paul should make it. They are both defending well and shooting ridiculous percentages. Rondo and KG are great defensive players, but their D isn’t quite what it’s been the last couple of years. (In Rondo’s case, it’s because he’s been dinged up and overworked.)

    Kevin Love is overrated. Go ahead. Watch all 48 minutes of a T’Wolves game. I dare you. It’s not as easy as you think.

    There are four or five better power forwards than Love who did not make the team. The numbers lie a bit: Love plays for the team that operates at the highest pace. Some of his competitors for the teams who lie at the bottom of the league in pace.

    In any case, the West is far deeper than the East. Leaving David West and Monta Ellis off the ‘snubs’ team is perfect evidence of depth of the WC. It’s crazy. I like D. West better than Randolph, but not quite as much as Aldridge, who has been phenomenal as a focal point of a depleted team. Isn’t this a Hornets’ blog? Where’s the love for D. West?

  15. JCS

    February 5, 2011 at 1:48 pm

    “Starters: Al Horford, Chris Bosh, Paul Pierce, Ray Allen, Rajon Rondo
    Reserves: Kevin Garnett, Joe Johnson.
    The top Western Conference Snubs as a 7-player Team:

    Starters: Zach Randolph, Kevin Love, LaMarcus Aldridge, Kevin Martin, Steve Nash
    Reserves: Lamar Odom, Tony Parker”
    1.) You’ve get three potential Hall of Famers in Paul, Ray, and Kevin going up against zero potentials with the exception of Steve, of whom does not play defense. For those reasons, plus the accomplishments that the EAST players have, your WEST ‘snubs’ would get beat.

    2.) I don’t think Joe Johnson should have made the All Star Team, but he does have a better PER than Iggy and Ray.

    3.) I never supported rookies in the All Star game but Blake Griffin is awesome. He is the next Charles Barkley IMO and $tern made a wi$e deci$ion putting thi$ man on the team. NIKE better sign him ASAP, b/c he is the future of the NBA.

    4.) Given the actual rosters, the EAST have a good chance to win the All Star game b/c they have Dwight Howard and Al Horford where as the rest of the positions are fairly matched…and Diggler, Melo, and Gasol won’t play D!

  16. gnielsen

    February 5, 2011 at 5:19 pm

    Forgot to include Aldridge in your “Pick 7” section for West Forwards.

  17. Zeiram

    February 6, 2011 at 7:34 am

    Sorry but this is ridiculous, first of all you had to made a disclaimer to your claim. Because the east reserves would beat the snubs! And as to talent alone I am not so sure too. Yes the west is loaded and they have way more snubs whereas 1 or 2 players in the east rooster wouldn´t even be in the discussion in the west.

    I dig Love, he is a deserved all star (got picked by Stern) but I understand why the coaches did not pick him. And on top of that the west has one player too who shouldn´t be an allstar this season.

  18. rudizzille22

    February 7, 2011 at 9:26 am

    Sorry bro, everything sounded good till you said Tony Parker and Kevin Martin are better shooters than Monta??!! You should probably watch more Warriors games and stop relying on espn highlights to draw your conclusions. Monta is shooting over 35% from 3 and a 45% shooting percentage plus he has an automatic mid-range that those two other guys would kill to have. I like the your use of the buzz word Volume Shooter too! Look at the numbers and you will see Monta is one of the most efficient scorers in the league. 11 for 22 to score 33 against the Bulls Saturday night. Nobody shoots 50 % against the Bulls. The fact you have snubbed Monta on your Snub article is freakin hilarious!!

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