When it comes to the All-Star game, not everyone can be a starter. There are players who get snubbed from the starting lineup or snubbed from the game as a whole. But there’s still hope.
The All-Star reserves are selected by head coaches around the league. Coaches vote for two guards, three frontcourt players and two additional players at any position. Coaches can vote for any player, except for their own.
Once the reserves are selected, the players with the most votes (from the East and West) become team captains and select players (starters and reserves) from a draft pool. Then, the All-Star rosters are set.
Since we’ve already discussed players that will likely become starters, let’s take a look at some players that deserve to be reserves in this year’s All-Star game.
1.) Donovan Mitchell
Donovan Mitchell and the Jazz are having a solid season. They’re third in the West with a record of 25-9, and they’re on a five-game winning streak. Mitchell plays a big part in their success.
Mitchell averages 25.4 points and 5.0 assists. He is also averaging a career-high 1.6 steals.
With Utah’s record and yet another good season from Mitchell, it is nearly impossible to exclude him from the All-Star game.
2.) Damian Lillard
Damian Lillard continues to shine, even if his team doesn’t. Lillard averages 24.2 points and 7.3 assists this season, and with his backcourt mate CJ McCollum out, Lillard is taking on the scoring load.
The Portland Trail Blazers aren’t having the best season, as they are 12th in the West. The Blazers are below .500 with a record of 13-21, and as the season goes on, their playoff window is closing.
Despite the Blazers’ lackluster performance, Lillard is still consistent. He deserves to be an All-Star, even if it means being a reserve.
However, it should be noted that guards like Ja Morant and Devin Booker are also worthy of All-Star nods.
3.) Karl Anthony-Towns
Anthony Davis could be in this spot, but as Davis deals with an injury, it would be slightly unfair to give him this honor.
Karl Anthony-Towns averages 24.5 points and 9.1 rebounds. He’s helping the Minnesota Timberwolves make a potential playoff push for the first time since 2018. And if all goes well, they’ll get to the playoffs.
Towns is already a two-time All-Star, and after missing the last two All-Star games, this could be the year he makes it. And his chances look pretty good.
4.) Brandon Ingram
Brandon Ingram has quietly (no pun intended) had a good season. He averages 22.9 points and 6.1 rebounds while shooting 45.3 percent from the field.
The quiet, laid-back forward is exceptionally talented, and although the Pelicans are struggling, he puts up great numbers. Ingram was named an All-Star for the first time in 2020, and as it stands, he’s on the verge of his second.
5.) Andrew Wiggins
Andrew Wiggins is one of the Golden State Warriors’ young pieces, and this year, he’s showing what he can do.
Wiggins has been in the league for a few years. He came into the game with big expectations, and initially, he had star potential. He hasn’t reached that point, but with the Warriors, he doesn’t have to take on that role.
He averages 18.8 points this season and overall is doing well for the Warriors. He and others like Gary Payton II are helping the vets.
Wiggins has yet to become an All-Star, but this year, he may get his chance.