Blazer’s Edge All-Stars Brian Freeman and Eric Griffith are here to mock draft the 2018 NBA All-Star rosters. Brian will be playing the role of Lebron James and making the first pick from the starters, while Eric will imitate Steph Curry and pick first from the reserves.
Brian Starter No. 1: Kevin Durant. I’m not letting Steph have Durant on his team. Durant is arguably the most complete scorer in the NBA. He defends the rim, shoots, can play multiple positions, and is a great fit next to Lebron. Easy first pick.
Eric Starter No. 1: Giannis Antetokounmpo. Works for me! The inside-out threat from Giannis and Steph will shred even an all-star defense.
Brian Starter No. 2: Anthony Davis. When alley-oops are thrown all day, give me the Brow. Not to mention Last time this guy played in an All-Star game, he scored 52 points. I’ll take him.
Eric Starter No. 2: DeMarcus Cousins. Possibly a risky pick but he’s been motivated lately. How can you pass on a guy who just literally put up Wilt numbers?
Brian Starter No. 3: James Harden. The guy cant be guarded one-on-one and he’s an elite passer and shooter. He’s the perfect talent to add to Durant, Lebron and Davis.
Eric Starter No. 3: Kyrie Irving. It’s tempting to leave Kyrie for Lebron’s team, but personal grudges have been all the rage in the NBA lately. I’ll roll the dice that Kyrie’s ballhandling skills and extra motivation will make him an optimal all-star game asset.
Brian Starter No 4: Joel Embiid. I worry about his minute limit, but give me the cockiest guy in an All-Star game every time. Especially when they are as talented as Embiid is. Plus his game translates better in an All Star game than DeRozans does.
Eric Starter No. 4: DeMar DeRozan. The four capital letters in his name have always bothered me.
Eric Reserve No. 1: Russell Westbrook. Blazers fans might exile me for this, but you can’t pass up a former MVP AND actual cockiest guy in the game.
Brian Reserve No. 1: Damian Lillard. I need a guard, someone who can catch and shoot, and someone with a little bit of an edge. He is not ideal defensively, but this is a guy I trust will show up.
Eric Reserve No. 2: Kristaps Porzingis. I already have have four guards and Giannis. Time to go with the most highlight-capable big man.
Brian Reserve No. 2: Jimmy Butler. If he wasn't listed as a guard, he would have been a starter. He’s been that good. Plus now Eric doesn’t have anyone to guard Lebron and Durant. Win/Win.
Eric Reserve No. 3: Draymond Green. I’ll take my chances with Green and Giannis covering Lebron and Durant!
Brian Reserve No. 3: Klay Thompson. These games often come down to making 3-pointers so Ill take the guy shooting 45 percent on seven attempts per game that also happens to be a top tier defensive player.
Eric Reserve No. 4: Karl-Anthony Towns. We’re entering BPA territory, and for an all-star game it’s hard to argue against a super-athletic big man who can knock down a triple.
Brian Reserve No. 4: Bradley Beal. I’m just going to gobble up all the shooting while Eric runs lineups with Giannis, Draymond, and DeRozan. But that's not the reason for the pick here. Beal has taken his game to another level this season and his first All-Star bid is a great time to showcase it.
Eric Reserve No. 5: John Wall. I had to watch JJ Barea for four years in college. He was just as annoying then as he is now. I’m still mad, so this pick is for him.
Brian Reserve No. 5: Victor Oladipo. The guys is averaging 24 points, 5 rebounds, 5 assits, and 2 steals while shooting 40% from deep. That’s good enough reason to take him for my third to last pick
Eric Reserve No. 6: Al Horford. Best all-around player left on the board. If the game does tighten up at the end his versatility could be a surprising asset.
Brian Reserve No. 6: Kevin Love. All-Star games are fast breaks and 3’s. Give me the guy who lights it up from long range, rebounds and throws outlet passes. Plus I need another big and I dont think Pop is going to let Aldridge play much.
Eric Reserve No. 7: LaMarcus Aldridge. I have Wall, Curry, Westbrook, and Irving on my team. There’s no way Lowry would be useful. Nobody’s passing Aldridge the ball, but at least he’s not taking it away from a more dangerous player like Lowry might.
Brian Reserve No. 7: Kyle Lowry. I really like Lowry as a regular season player, but he’s 31 and has already been to 3 All-Star games. He completely deserved the All Star selection, but this guy isn't playing until we have comfortably put the game away. (Smirk)
Brian’s Final Roster
Starters: Lebron, Durant, Davis, Harden, Embiid
Reserves: Lillard, Butler, Thompson, Beal, Oladipo, Love, Lowry
Brian’s Final Thoughts - My team is almost completely built around size, position flexibility, and shooting. Aside from Irving and Steph I got most of the elite shooters in the game. Steph better expect to get trapped. One of Curry or Irving will have guard Durant or Lebron to start the game. That may get one of their shooters off the court right away.
This team is made to get up and down the floor in transition, move the ball, and knock down open threes. If this game is anything like the previous 20 All-Star games, that bodes very well for my squad. Eric has a much deeper big man rotation, so I have to count on Embiid playing some actual minutes.
Eric’s Final Roster
Starters: Curry, Giannis, Cousins, Irving, DeRozan
Reserves: Westbrook, Porzingis, Green, Towns, Wall, Horford, Aldridge
Eric’s Final Thoughts - My team has several big men who can shoot the ball from deep in Cousins, Towns, Horford, and Aldridge. This will open up the court for easy penetration from Curry, Irving, Giannis, and Westbrook. Brian does have most of the wings, but I’m hoping that Giannis’ length and Green’s defensive tenacity will neutralize that advantage.
Readers - what would you have done differently? Let us know in the comments!