Sabonis, Trae, Booker ... The 2021 All-Star absences

The NBA has already announced the 14 substitutes that will accompany the 10 starters in the All-Star 2021. There are some debatable absences.


The election of the 24 players who in a few days will become Team Durant and Team LeBron for the NBA All-Star 2021, to be played on March 7 at the State Farm Arena in Atlanta, is official. The League published the list of those selected by the coaches, in charge of the substitutes, and, almost instantly and as usually happens with this type of election, there is criticism from some sectors regarding some of the players who have been left out. of such an important appointment

Almost certainly there will be a gap due to the physical problems of Anthony Davis (Lakers), chosen by the West. Leaving aside this appreciation, we present some cases that can fit into the idea of great absentees:

· Domantas Sabonis. Last year he took the baton as the star of the Pacers when Oladipo was injured and now, without his partner on the squad, it is not that he is equalizing the numbers but improving them. It has more merit because the squad has been a bit unprotected after the good signing of Caris LeVert, who, however, has left the guard-guard out indefinitely due to a health problem discovered after the transaction. Sabonis is at 21'5 points, 11'6 rebounds and 5'6 assists, improving the data of two of those three aspects. Even with discomfort in one knee he contributed like the most. The team is the four best in the East, so it doesn't make much sense to leave it out no matter how you look at it.

· Devin Booker. It is the oblivion that has raised the most dust at the public level. Ricky Rubio or Reggie Miller have opined in his favor and LeBron James classifies him as the most underrated player of the moment. The pity for him is that the Suns already have Chris Paul as a participant, this being what has slowed his inclusion. He is 38% in triples, his best mark as a professional, while he scores 24.7 points on average in a team in which he is no longer the only benchmark in attack, which gives more merit to his maintenance. The Suns are launched after starting with doubts, but it has not been enough to bring two players together in the All-Star. Main candidate to be the replacement for Davis in case of confirmation of discharge.

· Trae Young. With fewer minutes played, he has improved his numbers in triples and in assists. It is at 27 points on average. Their Hawks are tremendously irregular, they are worse than expected and, in this case, the group has reduced weight to what was achieved individually. Luka Doncic will be there and he will not, something different from what happened last year with these two stars of the 2018 Draft.

· Tobias Harris. It affects him that Joel Embiid and, above all, Ben Simmons have been chosen. The 76ers are doing very well, but it would be too much to put in three. Harris's improvement, over 20 points and settling for the first time at 50% in shooting from the field, is one reason for Philly's improvement. His worst public projection fails him compared to that of Ben Simmons.

· DeMar DeRozan. The Spurs have returned to the positions of honor in the Western Conference and will not have a representative. Tasks are well spread out, with Aldridge and Murray helping DeMar and with the growth of White, Vassell and Keldon Johnson. Going down to 33 minutes, less than in recent seasons, he is giving more assists (6.9) to involve his teammates more without losing his mind on shots (19.8 points). He also suffers that he does not have as much good press as others and the collective of the team in which he plays.

· Jerami Grant. His season as Most Improved Player should be awarded. It's probably fairer than including him in the All-Star, given that the Pistons are playing poorly and betting on youth development rather than trying to scratch wins. It's at 23.3 points per night, which is no joke.

· Mike Conley. This also affects the fact that Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert are in and getting a third man is difficult. On the other hand, ridiculous may be the word for Conley never going to the All-Star. The Jazz are breaking the mold and doing so under his direction. He is at 16.4 points, makes 41.4% of the triples he shoots and is the 2nd best player in +/- of the entire NBA.

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