Former NBA head coach and current Turner Network basketball analyst is arguing that, in early returns, Portland Trail Blazers forward Jerami Grant should make the 2023 NBA All-Star Team for the Western Conference.
Grant is averaging 22.0 points, 4.4 rebounds, and 2.8 assists for the 18-17 Trail Blazers, shooting 48.4% from the field and 43.9% from the three-point arc. He’s appeared in 33 games, playing 36.1 minutes per.
Van Gundy’s list does not include Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard, but Van Gundy has qualified his selections by saying he’s only choosing players who have participated in 80% or more of their team’s games. Lillard would have needed 28 games to qualify for Portland. He’s played in 23. Van Gundy indicates that he’ll alter the list as other players reach that threshold. That may or may not affect his opinion on Grant (and Lillard).
Van Gundy tweeted his Western Conference All-Star selections yesterday. He is among the first serious analysts to publicly include Grant among their nominees.
Here is the entire list from the tweet:
Starting Guards: Luka Doncic (DAL) and Ja Morant (MEM)
Starting Forwards: Domantas Sabonis (SAC) and Lauri Markkanen (UTA)
Starting Center: Nikola Jokic (DEN)
Reserves: Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (OKC), De’Aaron Fox (SAC), DeAndre Ayton (PHO), Jerami Grant (POR), Christian Wood (DAL), Anthony Edwards (MIN), CJ McCollum (NOP)
NBA All-Star voting is currently underway. It will conclude for fans on January 21st at 11:59 PM.
The 2023 NBA All-Star Game will be held on February 19th, 2023 in Salt Lake City, Utah.