MANILA, Philippines – Before anything else, it’s a crime that the first-ever NBA All-Star Game Draft between captains LeBron James and Steph Curry wasn’t televised. If anything, it could have been one of the most entertaining things to be witnessed this season. Take it from the captains themselves:
Yo @StephenCurry30 that was fun!! Definitely should’ve been televised. #AllStarDraft— LeBron James (@KingJames) January 25, 2018
Yeah I’d have to say that was legit! #nextyear https://t.co/fj4flo8lgq— Stephen Curry (@StephenCurry30) January 25, 2018
Nevertheless, the draft is done, and here are the results in alphabetical order.
Starters: LeBron James (captain), DeMarcus Cousins, Anthony Davis, Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving
Reserves: LaMarcus Aldridge, Bradley Beal, Kevin Love, Victor Oladipo, Kristaps Porzingis, John Wall, Russell Westbrook
Starters: Steph Curry (captain), Giannis Antetokoumpo, Joel Embiid, DeMar DeRozan, James Harden
Reserves: Jimmy Butler, Draymond Green, Al Horford, Damian Lillard, Kyle Lowry, Klay Thompson, Karl-Anthony Towns
If we are to go with the assumption that players will heed Commissioner Adam Silver’s wish that the All-Star Game will be played seriously, Team LeBron is set to completely dominate Team Stephen for just two reasons, which are all the reasons needed anyway.
1. Team LeBron successfully drafted the New Orleans frontcourt.
Since the draft was not televised, we are left to wonder what went through Curry’s mind when he let James draft both New Orleans superstars Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins – undoubtedly the best frontcourt in the NBA today.
Cousins is averaging 25.4 points, 12.9 rebounds, 5.2 assists, 1.6 steals and 1.6 blocks while Davis is averaging 26.5 points, 10.4 rebounds, 2.4 assists, 1.2 steals and 2.0 blocks. This tandem is singlehandedly keeping the Pelicans relevant in the playoff hunt of the wild, wild Western Conference and now, they are still teammates in the All-Star Game. Going by our mock draft, which went right in assuming that the captains took Durant and Antetokounmpo as their first picks, Cousins and Davis should have been drafted as consecutive picks. Given how their averages and MVP-caliber skills are so similar, it should have been unlikely that one captain would let the other draft them both. But here we are, assuming that the unacceptably-untelevised draft probably went Durant (1), Antetokounmpo (2), Davis (3), Harden (4) and Cousins (5). Wrong move, Steph.
James was also able to get his partner-in-crime Kevin Love (partners if you still sentimentally count Kyrie Irving) and Washington Wizards star guards John Wall and Bradley Beal.
Both teams drafted three tandems, sure, but Team LeBron already won after successfully drafting the Pelicans duo.
2. Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook.
No, no, this is not one of the tandems anymore (sorry, Thunder fans).
According to NBA.com, Team Stephen had the first pick from the reserve pool to counterbalance Team LeBron’s advantage of picking the first starter. Reigning NBA Most Valuable Player Russell Westbrook was wide open for the taking from the reserve pool and Curry took… someone else. Back to assumptions, he probably took a fellow Golden State Warrior, either Green or Thompson. Apparently, Curry was never bothered that 4-time MVP LeBron James already had Davis, Cousins and reigning Finals MVP Kevin Durant, so he let him take one more MVP just so he can complete his Warrior buddies.
So in summary, Team LeBron’s accolade collection now houses 6 MVP awards, one of which belonged to the guy who just averaged a triple-double and 4 Finals MVP awards. Meanwhile, Team Stephen has 2 MVP awards and 1 Defensive Player of the Year.
But Curry said that he likes being the underdog. So… you do you, cap’n? – Rappler.com
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