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Full list of NBA all-star participants revealed, 2 big snubs stand out

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As always whenever an all-star team is announced, fans are excited to learn which of the world’s best players will go up against … well, the world’s best players.

But whenever an all-star team is announced, otherwise deserving players are snubbed since you can’t fit every great player in the game.

The NBA All-Star game is no different, and the reserves were announced Tuesday with a couple of notable snubs.

The Eastern Conference reserves will be guards Kyle Lowry, John Wall, Bradley Beal, Victor Oladipo, Kristaps Porzingis, Kevin Love and Al Horford

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The Western Conference reserves will be Damian Lillard, Russell Westbrook, Klay Thompson, Jimmy Butler, Draymond Green, LaMarcus Aldridge and Karl-Anthony Towns

While the starters were selected via votes from fellow players, fans and the media, the reserves were selected solely from the votes of the league’s 30 head coaches.

Every reserve selected will either be going to their first all-star game (Beal, Oladipo, Porzingis, Towns) or going to at least their third game (everyone else).

While it’s hard to argue against any of the players selected, basketball purists will point out that only one player selected is from a losing team: Porzingis of the Knicks. All other 23 players on the rosters would be on a playoff team if the season ended today.

The Miami Heat (27-20) are the team with the best record who didn’t get an all-star representative while the Denver Nuggets (24-23) are the best Western Conference team without an All-Star.

LaMarcus Aldridge’s selection for the Spurs sets a new NBA record for most consecutive seasons a team has had an All-Star.

As always with all-star selections, social media is outraged that “x” wasn’t selected. Arguably the two biggest snubs this year are Andre Drummond of the Pistons and Paul George of the Thunder.

Drummond is leading the league in rebounds and has drastically improved his biggest weakness of free throw shooting. Drummond is, statistically, the worst free throw shooter in NBA history at 38 percent for his career. But he’s increased that to 63 percent this year and it would have been nice to see coaches reward him for his hard work in the offseason.

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George had made the All-Star team in four of his previous five seasons, with all of those coming with the Pacers. He’s averaging better than 20 points per game this season and also leads the NBA in steals and deflections.

George and the Thunder were playing Tuesday when the reserves were announced so we’ll have to wait for his reaction. But Drummond had the night off and didn’t hold back with his frustration at being snubbed.

With all 24 of the all-stars announced, all that’s left to settle are the actual teams. Team captains LeBron James and Steph Curry will pick their teams (untelevised) over the next few days. The actual teams will be revealed on Thursday on TNT.

Also to be decided are the coaches for each squad. With the NBA’s standard format of rewarding the coach of the team in each conference with the best record, Brad Stevens (Celtics) and Steve Kerr (Warriors) would normally get the nods.

However, the NBA doesn’t allow the same person to be a head coach in the All-Star Game in consecutive seasons. Since Stevens and Kerr coached in last year’s game, both conferences will go to their second-best teams. As of now that would be Dwane Casey (Raptors) and Mike D’Antoni (Rockets) assuming those teams remain in second place through Feb. 4.

The  NBA All-Star Game will take place Feb. 18 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.

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Ross Kelly has been a sportswriter since 2009.
Ross Kelly has been a sportswriter since 2009 and previously worked for ESPN, CBS and STATS Inc. A native of Louisiana, Ross now resides in Houston.
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