A reoccurring argument among NBA circles is the All-Star selection process. Should fans have all the say? Do coaches have enough power? Should the league ever intervene? Most importantly, who makes it and why.
Does the best player on a bad team deserved to make it, or does a good player on a great team deserved to make it, I think it’s the latter.
Lance Stephenson has been the Indiana Pacers third-best player all season. The shooting guard is pressing harder to make this squad than anyone since the Chris Bosh used car salesmen tactic.
— Lance Stephenson (@StephensonLance) January 19, 2014
Just last week he released this “Sir Lancealot” video trying to recruit the comedy vote.
Let me be the millionth to say he should be on that Eastern Conference All-Star team: here’s why.
In his past two NBA seasons he’s shown incredible growth as a player and as a person.
Who could forget the 2012 playoffs when his Pacers were playing the Miami Heat and Stephenson did a choking sign to LeBron James after he missed a technical free throw. He wasn’t a good player then, he was just a body on the bench who had no right to taunt the NBA’s best.
Each day we see less of the old Lance Stephenson.
Now 23-years-old and in his fourth season, it’s his time to be there.
He’s averaging a career-best 13.9 points per game, he also has career-highs in rebounding at 6.8 per game and assists at 5.2 per game.
He is shooting over 50% from the field (incredible for his position) and about 35% from three. Each year his free throw shooting has improved. He’s now found a permanent home in the Pacers starting lineup and plays over 35 minutes a night.
His team is great, and not just because it’s in the East. With a 32-7 record, Indiana is legitimately a title contender.
That 21-year-old who averaged two points per game and was lucky to even see the court from where he was sitting on the bench is no longer. Make no mistake, this isn’t an accident, it’s a little thing called the determination.
Along with Paul George and Roy Hibbert, expect to see Stephenson in New Orleans.
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Brett Poirier is a contributor to Sheridan Hoops. Follow @BrettNBA