On NBA Finals Eve, the NBA released their 2013-2014 All-NBA Teams with a few minor standouts. Ch-ch-check ’em out:
• F: Durant (fifth first-team selection)
• F: James (eighth)
• C: Joakim Noah, Chicago Bulls (first)
• G: Chris Paul, Los Angeles Clippers (fourth)
• G: James Harden, Houston Rockets (first)
• F: Blake Griffin, Clippers
• F: Kevin Love, Minnesota Timberwolves
• C: Dwight Howard, Rockets
• G: Stephen Curry, Golden State Warriors
• G: Tony Parker, San Antonio Spurs
• F: Paul George, Indiana Pacers
• F: LaMarcus Aldridge. Portland Trail Blazers
• C: Al Jefferson, Charlotte Bobcats/Hornets
• G: Goran Dragic, Phoenix Suns
• G: Damian Lillard, Blazers
Now brace yourselves for some #TruthBombs
We’ve moved past “Kobe vs. LeBron” to “Durant vs. LeBron” and not a moment too soon. The NBA was able to successfully execute a narrative shift on the fly since it had LeBron and Durant take turns executing dueling historic streaks. Durant should have earned league MVP despite the Thunder and Heat both leaning heavily on their superstars to succeed. A co-MVP a la Steve McNair/Peyton Manning in 2004 would also have been acceptable.
Kevin Love is an intriguing selection at second team All-NBA. He’s been in the league since 2008, yet his only impact on the league is chucking up video game numbers on a bad team. His placement over Portland’s LaMarcus Aldridge, who was the anchor for a playoff team, looks out of place.
Dwight Howard’s erosion continues this season, usurped from the first team and Defensive Player of the Year honor by Joakim Noah. Ever since the Bulls’ Derrick Rose became Mr. Glass, Noah has been the face of the Bulls, as lethal passing the ball as he is pulling down rebounds. Unlike Howard, who has abandoned any pretense of being a leader, Noah has thrived under the increased pressure.
The biggest hole is at point guard. Goran Dragic has earned much respect in assuming full-time duties at the point in Phoenix.
However, I think hometown hero John Wall should have got a nudge over Dragic for third team honors. He led the league in assists and, more importantly, kept a mediocre Wizards team above water just enough to make the playoffs.
Just long enough for a grown man to embarrass himself in public.