HOW ARE THE NBA ALL-STAR GAME RESERVES CHOSEN?
-Article written on December 2010. At the end, Blake Griffin got a spot
on the NBA All-Star Game and Kevin Love was selected as a replacement for
injured Yao Ming-
More interesting info at: http://hardwoodparoxysm.com/archive/2012/12/05/all-stars-on-lottery-teams/
The "popularity contest" of the fan ballot determine
the starting fives. Fans have about two months between November and January to
pick their favorite players.
Later is the NBA coaches job to complete both rosters. Each coach has to pick seven players (2 guards, 2 forwards, 1 center and 2 more regardless of the position) from his own Conference, not being able to choose his own players. When some player is injured (starter or not) is the NBA office who directly names the replacement player.
Every season there are some players making great stats in weak teams (non-playoffs and/or under .500 teams) who have a very small chance to make the All-Star teams, or at least that's the feeling I have. Nobody doubts that players like Blake Griffin or Kevin Love making such a huge stats would be a lock in the All-Star team if they were playing in Boston or LA. So, I was thinking, which kind of players have been selected in the last 25 years? And the best I could do was to look at the history of the players chosen as a reserves in the last 25 seasons (1985-2010)
Total Players chosen: 372
Players from teams under .500 victories: 65 (17% of total players)
Players from non-playoffs teams: 55 (15% of total players)
20% of the players (73 out of 372) chosen after the fan ballot was released played on teams under .500 victories or out of the Playoffs. That's more players than I thought before looking at the numbers. And, as we can see in the images, in the last 10 years the trend is to select more of these players. In fact, the numbers are bigger for the injury replacements (40%, 15 out of 37 players), it seems the NBA prefer to reward players having great season, while the coaches prefer to reward good teams:
Total injury replacements: 37
Players from teams under .500 victories: 13 (35% of total players)
Players from non-playoffs teams: 12 (32% of total players)
Zydrunas Ilgauskas in 2003 is the player with the worst record of the last 25 years to be chosen as a NBA All-Star Game reserve. Cleveland Cavaliers have 9 wins and 38 losses (.191) at January 31, 2003.