Welcome to the weekly NBA stock report where we go around the league and examine whose stock is rising and whose is falling.
On Thursday the reserves for the 2016 NBA All-Star Game were announced, meaning the rosters have officially been set. As is usual, there have been a number of notable all-star snubs this season.
Thus, for this week’s Stock Report we’re going all negative with a special all-snub edition.
Dwane Casey: This may look odd since Casey is a coach, but let’s be real here, he probably got the worse snub out anyone on this list.
San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich was named the Western Confererence coach because the Golden State Warriors’ Steve Kerr was made ineligible since he did the job last season and Luke Walton hasn’t officially received any credit for the excellent work he did, therefore defaulting the job to the second-place Spurs and Popovich.
By similar logic, Casey should’ve got the nod as the East coach because the first-place Cleveland Cavaliers just fired David Blatt and Tyronn Lue hasn’t even coached a handful of games yet as the replacement, so why not give the nod to the second-place Toronto Raptors coach? The Lue selection doesn’t make any sense at all.
Reggie Jackson: The Detroit Pistons were rewarded for their place in the standings with the selection of Andre Drummond, unquestionably the team’s best player. However, there’s an argument to be made for Jackson as his numbers are nearly identical to those of the Boston Celtics’ Isaiah Thomas and Dwyane Wade of the Miami Heat.
Thomas deserves to be there as the lone representative of what is a good Celtics team, and Wade got voted in, so there’s not much you do about that. Wade’s Heat teammate Chris Bosh, however, is another story. He’s putting up all-star numbers for sure, but does a seventh-place team deserve a second all-star over a sixth-place team? Probably not, but Wade and Bosh are the safer legacy selections over a newcomer like Jackson.
Pau Gasol: Sticking with Bosh, Gasol should straight-up be in Toronto over the ex-Raptor. His overall numbers are better and his team is in third place with many folks around the league still thinking the Chicago Bulls are actually the second best team in the East. Bottom line, Chicago deserves two all-star selections over Miami.
Dirk Nowitzki: As far as the big men selected to the West, the coaches probably got it right, but there’s a strong argument to be made for Nowitzki as his Dallas Mavericks are in sixth place when most believed they’d be toiling around the 11 or 12 seed coming into this season. This deserves recognition and even at age 37 Nowitzki is still the Mavs’ best player.
Damian Lillard: As poor as the Mavericks were expected to be, the Portland Trail Blazers were anticipated to be competing in the Ben Simmons sweepstakes, and instead are fighting for that eight-seed in the West. Leading the charge has been Lillard, who’s enjoying his best season yet, averaging career highs in points and assists.
The West’s backcourt is definitely already loaded, but room could’ve been made for him over a guy like Klay Thompson, who probably was selected more on the fact that his team is insanely good.
Gordon Hayward: The Utah Jazz have been ravaged by injury, but are still right in the mix for a playoff spot and that’s largely thanks to Hayward who started off the season slow, but has come on very strong of late. His candidacy isn’t as strong as Lillard’s but he’d still be a fine replacement for a the Warriors’ Thompson as they share very similar numbers.