The list of 2023 NBA All-Stars is now officially unveiled after the NBA on TNT crew announced the reserves on Thursday evening before the network’s doubleheader. As is the case with almost every year’s roster reveal, several worthy players got left off the list.
However, two of the players who were snubbed from being named All-Star Game starters last week (Joel Embiid and Domantas Sabonis) made it in as reserves. Those were expected decisions.
In this case, the unexpected decisions, or exclusions, are the ones that have NBA Twitter and general fans and followers of the league in an uproar.
Here’s a look at five players who unquestionably should have made the 2023 NBA All-Star Game but didn’t:
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F Pascal Siakam, Toronto Raptors
I get it. The Raptors aren’t good this year. But neither are the Bulls, who have DeMar DeRozan as a 2023 All-Star Game representative.
There aren’t too many players who can play the type of two-way basketball that Siakam does and even with Toronto being bad, it’s surprising that he isn’t headed to Utah for the ASG.
G Anthony Edwards, Minnesota Timberwolves
The Timberwolves underperformed and weren’t good for much of the first part of this season. But over the past month and change, they’ve been great! This might be a case of too little, too late for Ant, but he’s been phenomenal in Minnesota’s trek to a top-6 seed in a crowded Western Conference. His stats are up across the board (points, rebounds, assists, field goal percentage, etc.) and they’re getting better as the season goes on.
I’m sure he’ll use this as motivation going forward.
G Jalen Brunson, New York Knicks
The Knicks are good again and it has very much to do with Jalen Brunson’s performance this season. How you choose to dish out his importance to the Knicks versus Julius Randle, who made the All-Star team, depends on who’s asked. Still, it seems like a player that’s been this good and this much of a difference-maker in Year 1 with a team deserves a spot.
G De'Aaron Fox, Sacramento Kings
Whew. A top-3 seed in the West only gets one All-Star. Interesting, especially considering how good Fox has been for a team who historically has been very very bad. Additionally, Fox is one of the best closers and fourth-quarter scorers in the NBA this season, which screams “All-Star” to me. But I digress.
G James Harden, Philadelphia 76ers
NO JAMES HARDEN?! WHAT!
We know James Harden isn’t the same player he was as a Houston Rocket. But he’s changed his game to benefit his team and the superstar player (Joel Embiid) he’s playing alongside. The result? The Sixers have one of the best records in the East and James Harden is averaging 21.4 points and 11.0 assists per game to become one of the league’s most reliable point guards.
The fact that he’s not a 2023 NBA All-Star is truly ridiculous.