The NBA All-Star voting season is upon us!
Starting on Christmas Day, fans can now vote for who they think should start at the 2023 NBA All-Star Game in Cleveland.
While multi-time All-Stars like LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Stephen Curry and Giannis Antetokounmpo are sure to be honored once again, what about players who have never been selected to the All-Star Game?
MORE: How to Vote for the NBA All-Star Game 2023
There are more than a few players in each conference who are worthy of your consideration. Take a look at potential All-Stars for the first time below.
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Jarrett Allen, Cleveland Cavaliers
Statistics: 16.8 PTS, 10.8 REB, 2.0 AST, 1.4 BLK, 70.2% FG
Allen is having a remarkable season, playing a huge role in the Cavaliers’ surprising success.
By averaging his career highs in points per game, rebounds per game and shooting percentage from the field, Allen has proven himself as a cornerstone of the Cleveland franchise. Along with rookie star Evan Mobley, he’s the anchor for the league’s second-best defense, a major improvement after the Cavaliers finished with the 25th-ranked defense last season.
Allen will compete with his teammate, Darius Garland, to represent the host city in the All-Star Game.
LaMelo Ball, Charlotte Hornets
Statistics: 19.7 PTS, 8.0 AST, 7.4 REB, 1.9 STL, 39.2% 3PT
Ball has been the catalyst for a quality start to the season in Charlotte, looking like an All-Star caliber player. He’s upped his averages in points, assists, rebounds, steals and 3-point percentage after winning Rookie of the Year, really taking that leap from young phenom to star.
He is one of only two players in the league this season, joining Dejounte Murray, who is also on this list, to average at least 15 points, eight assists, seven rebounds and 1.5 steals per game.
MORE: Ball is making strong arguments to be a 2023 NBA All-Star
Darius Garland, Cleveland Cavaliers
Statistics: 19.5 PTS, 7.3 AST, 3.0 REB, 1.4 STL, 47.9% FG, 38.4% 3PT
Allen certainly deserves credit for Cleveland’s surprising start to the year, but Garland is the engine that keeps the Cavaliers running. The junior is making a solid case for being the NBA’s Most Improved Player of the Year, averaging his career highs in all major statistical categories.
With nearly 20 points with more than seven assists per night, Garland has proven himself to be one of the most prolific playmakers in the NBA today. If the Cavaliers only got one All-Star, Garland would have my vote.
Fred VanVleet, Toronto Raptors
Statistics: 20.1 PTS, 6.7 AST, 5.1 REB, 1.6 STL, 39.7% 3PT
The VanVleet season doesn’t get as much attention as it deserves.
Filling the void left by Kyle Lowry as the greatest player in Raptors franchise history, VanVleet has risen to the challenge and has been extremely successful. He’s averaging his career highs in points, assists and rebounds, but more importantly, he’s scoring with the greatest efficiency of his career. Shooting 43.4 percent from the field is a major improvement over his shot below 40 percent last year, and his 39.7 percent shooting from 3 is his career-best since 2017-18.
The kicker? He has more than doubled his number of attempts since then.
On top of that, VanVleet has established himself as one of the league’s best perimeter defenders at guard position, facing the toughest perimeter showdown every night. The Raptors may not get an All-Star game, but if they do, it would be VanVleet.
Deandre Ayton, Phoenix Suns
Statistics: 17.0 PTS, 11.1 REB, 1.6 AST, 62.6% FG
Ayton is having an All-Star season, but will the Suns get three All-Stars? Chris Paul and Devin Booker will almost certainly be padlocks. If the Suns have the best record in the NBA, they could get a third.
Ayton is averaging a double-double with a career-high 17.0 points and 11.1 rebounds per game. He has been a valuable rim protector and takes on all the tough defensive tasks in the Western Conference, from Nikola Jokic to Anthony Davis, Rudy Gobert and more.
The former No. 1 overall pick has a case.
Anthony Edwards, Minnesota Timberwolves
Statistics: 22.1 PTS, 5.8 REB, 3.6 AST, 1.6 STL
Speaking of the No. 1 overall picks, second-year guard Edwards is also defending himself.
Edwards is a highlight reel and has the Timberwolves in pursuit of the playoffs thus far. He’s improved in every stat category from his rookie season, and he’s come a long way on the defensive end, really completing his game.
Minnesota probably doesn’t have a good enough record to get two All-Stars, but if he does get one, Edwards will compete with Karl-Anthony Towns for that spot.
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Oklahoma City Thunder
Statistics: 22.7 PTS, 5.2 AST, 4.8 REB, 0.9 STL
Gilgeous-Alexander has made the most of a rebuilding situation in Oklahoma City, proving that it is the guy to build for the future. It has not been as efficient as last year, but Gilgeous-Alexander has been clutch this season with some winning games and lots of shots to seal the game.
The Thunder may not have the record for an All-Star Game, but Gilgeous-Alexander has as good an argument as anyone on this list for making his first All-Star appearance.
Ja Morant, Memphis Grizzlies
Statistics: 23.7 PTS, 6.8 AST, 5.5 REB, 1.5 STL, 47.8% FG
Morant was in early season MVP talks with how he walked out the door. Averaging his career highs in every major statistical category, Morant looks like part of an All-Star. It has the Grizzlies sitting comfortably in the picture of the playoffs in the West and with one of the best records in the conference, they will almost certainly land an All-Star game.
It’s safe to assume that Morant will be the one.
Dejounte Murray, San Antonio Spurs
Statistics: 17.8 PTS, 8.8 AST, 8.4 REB, 2.0 STL
Murray has been incredibly fantastic for the Spurs, looking like the leading candidate for Most Improved Player of the Year. With averages over 15 points, eight rebounds, eight assists and two steals per game, he adds to a very exclusive listing alongside Michael Jordan and Magic Johnson as the only players in NBA history to accomplish that feat. Murray is also tied with Nikola Jokic for the second-most triple-doubles in the NBA this season with six.
It will be interesting to see if the Spurs get an All-Star game, but Murray certainly deserves one.