The NBA chooses their three All-NBA teams after every season. The selections have huge implications for players’ money and legacies. On JJ Reddick’s “The Old Man and the Three” podcast, Jayson Tatum talked about missing out on more than $30 million in his rookie extension. To make the coveted Hall of Fame players need to have multiple All-NBA selections.
All NBA teams are chosen by voting for the best players at their respective positions. Two guards, two forwards, and one center. Sticking to this format has massive implications for players. Joel Embiid and Nikola Jokic are both having MVP caliber seasons, but only one can make first-team all-NBA? Seems wrong to me.
In the NBA positions have become less and less strict. What position is Giannis? He plays point guard but also center. What position is Demar DeRozan, guard or forward? If DeRozan receives half of his votes for guard and half for forward he probably won’t be on the first team all-NBA. How does that make any sense, or justice for DeMar?
How Can the NBA Choose These Teams Better?
The NBA already does it, players are too versatile, and matchups change so much that players don’t have concrete positions anymore. Choose the five best players in the league, they deserve the honor of first-team All-NBA.
For example, if the 2022 season were to end right now, my first team all-NBA would be:
Steph Curry, Demar Derozan, Giannis, Joel Embiid, Nikola Jokic. It doesn’t matter that Embiid and Jokic play the same position, they both deserve it. There isn’t a better forward to pick over one of them.
MVP candidates shouldn’t miss out on All-NBA selections because of the format. Give the voters more freedom by eliminating positions.
Fourth Team All-NBA?
Going back to Jayson Tatum missing out on money by not making All-NBA. If the selections hold so much weight in terms of controlling a player’s potential salary, then the NBA needs a fourth team. The voters being the ones who control that is not always fair. Votes should be 100% based on a player’s skill and stats. A fourth team allows more players the chance to earn that $30 million.
Adding a fourth team allows for more of the league’s talented players to be recognized. It also allows talented young players like Tatum to cash in on playing well.