Latest News, NBA / Apr 4, 2011 / 11:00 am

The Stricklands: Best NBA Players Who’ve Never Been All-Stars

Monta Ellis (photo. Bethany Gilbert)

Monta Ellis (photo. Bethany Gilbert)

Late last week, I saw a tweet from ESPN’s Chris Palmer asking the world who the best players in the NBA were who’ve never made an All-Star game. While I didn’t totally agree with his list of Lamar Odom, Jason Terry, Al JeffersonAndre Miller and Jamal Crawford, I figured it was an interesting topic.

So I made my own, with the only essential characteristics being that the player must be playing now and have at least five years of NBA experience. While most of this list is still young and will have opportunities to knock down the door, it is a little surprising to see some of the players that have never been named an All-Star. Not a bad squad right here:

LaMarcus Aldridge – His snubbing this year was one of the worst in recent memory. Whatever requisite an All-Star needs, he had it: an improved all-around game (22 points and 8.6 rebounds a night), an overachieving team and the reputation as his team’s unquestioned leader. There’s no way Aldridge stays on this list much longer.

Andrew Bogut – As we’ve covered before, Bogut might be the second-best defensive center in the game and in a conference devoid of good power players, how he hasn’t made the February showcase is troublesome. Actually, two things have prevented him. First, the Bucks are hardly ever any good. And second, he plays in Milwaukee, where the team gets no national love.

Andrew Bynum – This one is easy to diagnose. If Bynum didn’t take yearly vacations due to leg and knee injuries, he would’ve made the main event by now. Whenever he starts to get it going, his knees give out and he starts back over again. But when he is right, like he is right now, Bynum might be the second-best center in the game.

Monta Ellis – Over the past two seasons, Ellis is averaging nearly 25 points a game. There are only a select few other cats who can say that and most of them are All-Star regulars. Still, Ellis hasn’t found his way there yet. This season was much of the same for him: 24.2 points, 5.6 assists and 2.1 steals a game on a bad team.

Rudy Gay – Gay is quietly becoming one of the better young wing players in the league. While his numbers have stayed consistent for the past four years – somewhere around 19-20 points, six rebounds and 1.5 steals, Gay’s shooting percentages and efficiency have all steadily increased. He was having the best year of his career before the shoulder injury this season. If Memphis can keep this team together, he stands a good chance to become an All-Star next year.

Andre Iguodala – Iguodala’s offensive numbers are down this year; he’s averaging just 14.1 points a game, his lowest in five years. But because Philly has surrounded him with better players, his role has changed. He’s playing more point forward, averaging a career-best 6.4 assists per game. Plus, as he showed in the World Championships this summer, he locks up. Is there a better wing defender in the entire league? I have no idea how he didn’t get any All-Star love.

Stephen Jackson – Forget the craziness. Forget the off-court issues and the brawl and all of that. Since leaving Indiana, Jackson has become one of the best all-around players in the entire league. So why hasn’t he been to an All-Star Game? For one, his Warrior and Charlotte teams all did just enough to slip beyond the Lottery, but never enough to stand out in the playoffs (besides Golden State’s 2007 upset against Dallas). And his past reputation probably has something to do with it. Now that he’s graduated to the twilight of his career at 32 years old (he actually turns 33 tomorrow), Jackson probably missed his best chances.

Kevin Martin – While he doesn’t have the greatest all-around game (never averaged five rebounds or three assists in a season), Martin has been filling it up for the past five years. Since becoming a full-time starter, he’s averaged at least 20 a game every year.

Lamar Odom – It would’ve been fun to see Odom make the All-Star team this year while winning the Sixth Man award. Odom is in a weird spot. His talent dictates that he should’ve earned a spot by now in at least one midseason classic. But the fact remains that he never really had a case. He’s always been good but not great. With the way the Lakers are structured, he probably never will make an All-Star team.

Josh Smith – It seems every year, we have the same conversation revolving around Smith. He’s always just on the brink of making it, but never seems to have that extra push to get him into the game. While his teammate Al Horford has been named to the East squad in back-to-back seasons, it’s possible he’s not even the best frontcourt player on his own team.

Who do you think is the best NBA player who has never made an All-Star team?

Follow Sean on Twitter at @SEANesweeney.

Follow Dime on Twitter at @DimeMag.

Become a fan of Dime Magazine on Facebook HERE.

Related Posts with Thumbnails
  • Detroit Dave

    You gotta add Jalen Rose to the list.

    Marcus Camby also

  • leech

    Conversely, who are the worst NBA players who have made an all-star team? Jamaal Magloire has to be on this list.

  • nizzio

    Andre Miller once led the NBA in assists. He should have been named an all-star

  • beiber newz

    HAHAHAHHAHA

    i been saying on so many posts how ppl hate on monta being selected as an all star bcuz of his team’s record.

    good that there is an article of this nature.

  • money

    Monta’s snub was ridiculous. Can’t believe he’s not an allstar while the following guys have been:

    vlade divac
    Rashard Lewis (multiple all-stars)
    Mo Williams
    Mehmet Okur
    Anthony Mason
    Wally Szcerbiak
    How is Ilgauskas a 2-time allstar?

    haha i know it seems like a lot of haterade but come on, it’s bs that Monta gets no love

  • Gbreezy

    Loul Deng

  • A.R.

    @ Money

    Ilgauskas is a two time allstar bcuz the center has been weak for the last decade. But he’s had some pretty decent years I’d say.

  • feature

    how da f**k mo williams become an allstar b4 Monta?

  • drew

    mike bibby is a name that comes to mind.

  • Promoman

    I’d say Rod Strickland is the best non All-Star in the past 20 or so years. Of the players listed in the articles I’d pick Andre Iguodala since he’s probably the best overall player. Many of the other guys can score more but he’s the best defender.

  • Young Gunner

    I never thought Bynum was that good anyways. Besides, most of the players on this list play in the West and that conference is stacked

  • s.bucketz

    @money…are u retarded??

    vlade was sick..one of the greatest passing big men of all time hands down..okur made it cuz of injuries i think and the C position has been weak (hence ilguaskus as well)
    and anthony mason was a monster straight up..

    Mo williams on the other hand felt entitled to the ASG cuz he played wit JeBron Lames..they both cried about it and he finally got it after some injuries..straight bitchassness

  • Chaos

    All good choices but I gotta agree with deng, camby and miller as well.

    Igoudala is such a good all around player but to be the de facto leader he doesn’t take over games and tends to defer to teammates too much. Too many times williams, young, holiday and meeks have taken over games when he should have. Dude has so much talent but he doesn’t have that alpha dog mentality to make people see that he is the leader. Philly doesn’t have that type of team and that hurts them (same thing that will hurt denver this year). Iggy needs to start being “The Man”

  • Mtx

    Nene anyone?

  • http://wetagua.blogspot.com/ Bear

    I dont Andrew deserves to make it into a All star game because he can never finish a season. Also most of these players on this list except Ellis really never could take over in a game.

  • APE

    SAM CASSELL

  • K Dizzle

    Sam made it once….

  • crossphaded

    Ron Harper, in his years with the Cavs and Clippers. He was wreckin shop before his ACL injury and a perennial 20-5-5 guy.

  • sh!tfaced

    Current: Iguodala, Monta, Bogut, Gay, LMA etc…
    ***forget Josh Smith, he’s too dumb and incomplete to become a true all-star.

    All-Time: Petrovic, Derek Harper, Big Smooth, Strickland, Mark Jackson(?), etc…

    Fluke All-Stars: Mo Williams, Stackhouse, Wally World, Jamaal effin’ Magloire…

  • http://www.sactownroyalty.com Willis

    Mike Bibby should have gotten in in 2004.

  • iCARNACKi

    Glad someone else said Nene. I would definitely include Andre Miller too. It is criminal that Monta hasn’t been an All Star.

  • BiGShoTBoB

    Yeah Monta should have made it a long time ago. This year being his biggest snub.

    @ Money Anthony Mason was a straight beast youngin and don’t even mention Vlade when he played on the Lakers.

  • http://nbainstl.blogspot.com strengthstl

    if Monta had a team around him like Rose has in Chicago he’d be considered an MVP candidate. His game and Rose’s are near mirrors of eachother. I hope Golden State takes a huge step next year. A two-way small foward and a defensive minded center.

    Monta Ellis on Portland would be crazy. Monta, Wallace, Aldridge, and a healthy Oden is a top 3 team in the West. A trade for Brandon Roy would probably work out well for both teams, if Steph Curry could turn into Rondo with a much much much better jumper.