Where's the Love? | Sharapova's Thigh

Below are statistics of two NBA players that play the center and power forward positions.

One of them made the All-Star Game as a reserve, and the other did not. They are both in the same conference, so essentially, one of them was chosen was to be on the team over the other.

As ESPN.Com explains, "The reserves were selected in voting by the head coaches in each conference, who had to vote for two forwards, two guards, a center and two players regardless of position."

Here are the statistics(check out Basketball Reference's glossary if you do not understand them all), and I will reveal who "Player A" and "Player B" are after said statistics:

Player A

Player Efficiency Rating- 24.6 (6th In NBA)

Points Per Game- 21.4 (16th In NBA)

Assists Per Game- 2.5

Rebounds Per Game- 15.5(1st In NBA)

Total Rebound Percentage- 23% (1st In NBA)

Blocks Per Game- 0.4

Steals Per Game- 0.6

Field Goal Percentage- 47.2 %

Free Throw Percentage- 87% (19th In NBA)

3-Point Percentage- 43.9% (10th In NBA)

True Shooting Percentage- 59.3%

Effective Field Goal Percentage- 51.7 %

Offensive Rating- 123 (7th In NBA)

Win Shares- 7.8 (5th In NBA)

Estimated Wins Added- 11.5 (7th In NBA)


Player B

Player Efficiency Rating- 21.4

Points Per Game- 13.6

Assists Per Game- 3

Rebounds Per Game- 9.4 (9th In NBA)

Blocks Per Game- 2 (7th In NBA)

Steals Per Game- 0.8

Field Goal Percentage- 48.6 %

Free Throw Percentage- 72.3%

3-Point Percentage- N/A (0 For 1)

True Shooting Percentage- 52.3%

Effective Field Goal Percentage- 48.6 %

Offensive Rating- 104

Win Shares- 4.9

Estimated Wins Added- 7.6

Which player seems like they're having the better season? The much better season, actually. It's clearly "Player A".

"Player A" is the Minnesota Timberwolves' Kevin Love. Going into Thursday, he was averaging 1.9 more rebounds than any other player in the NBA, and had 106 more rebounds than any other player. He even had a game this season where he scored 31 points and 31 rebounds. There hasn't been another 30-30 performance since Moses Malone did it in 1982.

But apparently, Love's incredible season and historically amazing game were not enough to impress the Western Conference coaches. Instead, more of them had All-Star votes for "Player B", who is the San Antonio Spurs' Tim Duncan.

Why did the coaches choose Duncan? Much like the way the MLB Gold Glove awards are handed out, reputation. Duncan's been to 12 previous All-Star Games, was twice named NBA MVP, and has four championship rings(and was the MVP in the NBA Finals three times). So his resume is unbelievable, and when you think "Tim Duncan", you just immediately think of him being an All-Star. But the statistics say otherwise this season, especially in comparison to an All-Star snub like Kevin Love.

The fact Duncan's Spurs have the best record in the NBA probably played a bit into the coaches voting him in as well, but he has a tremendous supporting cast. Meanwhile, Love's Minnesota Timberwolves are 11-37, and would probably have a worse record than the Cleveland Cavaliers(who are getting talk as possibly the worst team ever) if not for Love. It's not Love's fault the rest of his team absolutely stinks.

I understand the fans not voting the 22-year-old Love in. Fan voting is a popularity contest; Love's still not a name casual fans know(and being All-Star snubbed won't help that), and many people would rather watch paint dry than watch his Timberwolves, so it may stay that way for awhile. But the coaches not voting him in is beyond absurd; they should know how good he is. He put up a double-double 25 times against Western Conference teams. Heck, he averaged 23.8 points and a ridiculous 19.3 rebounds in four games against Duncan's Spurs this season.

There's All-Star snubs in every sport, every season. But taking fan voting out of it, this really is the worst snub I can remember seeing.

I have a feeling in his remaining games this season, Love's going to dominate the Western Conference teams more than he already has. Maybe the coaches will notice this time.

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