For the first time in NBA history, there will not be a designated “Center” position on the ballot. The league announced on Wednesday that it was removing the Center slot on the ballot due to the evolution of basketball as a sport – namely because the league has become more small-ball-centric. Rather than voting for two guards, two forwards, and a center, fans will now be voting for three front court players and two back court players.
NBA executive vice president of operations Stu Jackson stated that “[having a center on the ballot was] outdated and not representative of today’s game or players.” This comes as a result of the increased versatility of most big men in the NBA. Kevin Garnett, Chris Bosh, and Tim Duncan, for example, are all frequent all-stars that were used as both Centers and Power Forwards by their teams last year.
It’s about time the NBA removed the Center position from the ballot. For some time “Centers” have been few and far between. Now in the league, there are pretty much two, maybe three, centers worth mentioning as all-stars: Dwight Howard, Andrew Bynum, and MAYBE Brook Lopez. The way the ballot was structured before, the Los Angeles Clipper’s DeAndre Jordan had a shot at becoming an all-star, and let’s be real “Lob City,” he just isn’t. The great thing that adjusting the ballot did was make it so that hybrid Power Forward/Centers like Josh Smith are less likely to get snubbed from the all-star game, and that truly is a great thing.
Until next time…