When Allen Iverson was named a starter for the All-Star team along side fellow shooting guard Dwyane Wade, many people knew that it would be very difficult for all of the deserving point guards to make the Eastern Conference team. The coaches had their say, and New Jersey’s Devin Harris made it along side Orlando’s Jameer Nelson. But once Nelson went down with a season-ending injury, many felt that this opened a door for David Stern to name Mo Williams – a point guard – to team.
After yesterday’s news that Boston got their third player in Ray Allen – not a point guard – you can understand the frustration around Cleveland.
When Ben Wallace called the original snub a “shamockery,” (a clever blend of sham and mockery), many had a good laugh. When LeBron James dropped the “disrespect” card, many got out their collective violins and used this as yet another reason why LeBron could bolt in 2010. But after the second snub, team owner Dan Gilbert jumped all over it with an email to the Plain Dealer.
Ben Wallace was right when he called Mo originally being passed over for the All-Star Game a ‘shamockery,’ ” said Cavaliers owner Daniel Gilbert in an e-mailed statement. “But not naming him as the natural and obvious replacement for the unfortunately injured Jameer Nelson is stupidiculous, idillogical and preposterageous.”
It’s absolutely great to see Gilbert pick up right where Tri-C’s own leaves off. Even made up words sound better than those emailed by Phil Savage.
Does Ray Allen deserve to play in the All-Star Game? Of course. But does not naming a point guard in the absence of Nelson make any sense whatsoever? Not at all. It doesn’t help matters much that David Stern has now subbed in Allen in back-to-back instances. Of course, the Commissioner offered zero explanation when asked of his selection.
The Eastern conference will go to battle against the West with one point guard (Devin Harris) and one center (Dwight Howard). The rest of the roster is filled with all types of tweener players that could be either shooting guards or small forwards. LeBron James may now be forced into extra minutes as a ball-handler, all because his teammate – one that is well-deserving of a role in this game – got looked over once again. Gilbert has every right to feel the way that he does.
Just to get this out of the way, I do not think that a team should have more players based on their overall record. But I do think that a player that has meant as much as Williams has to the Cavaliers and their respective success means more in terms of a bid than that of someone like Mike Bibby and the Hawks. Heck, even Harris is a bit questionable due to the fact that he is the first option for the Nets.
And what did Danny Ferry have to say?
“I know Commisioner Stern has followed our team’s success but maybe doesn’t appreciate how important Mo has been to our team. We have had a great start. We have been really good on both ends of the court, have the top record in the league, and thus far have led the league in point differential all year long.
“Our players and coaches know how important Mo has been to our team’s success. Regardless, we have done a great job of not getting distracted and staying focused on our team goals. I am confident we will continue to do so.”
Many are hoping that Mo will use this perceived snub as motivation. He has already been quoted as saying he will just take it out on the opposing coaches of the East/West that failed to vote him in. If there is another injury on the team and David Stern chooses someone like Bibby, Rajon Rondo or New York’s David Lee, I can only imagine the collective scream that will come from the general Cleveland/Independence area.