The first ballot results for the 2013 NBA All-Star Game were released on Thursday, with minimal surprises. LeBron James and Kobe Bryant were the leading vote-getters, as expected, in the annual popularity contest masquerading as a referendum on the league’s best players.
The fact that James and Bryant are immensely deserving of the honor makes the results easier to swallow. Nobody among the early leaders is a completely terrible choice, either, since many of the league’s most beloved players also happen to be having great individual seasons. Carmelo Anthony and Kevin Durant, who have the Knicks and Thunder, respectively, vying for the best record in the NBA, were among the deserving All-Stars who garnered large vote tallies.
The projected starters, according to NBA.com, appear below.
None of those choices make anybody want to blow up the fan-voting process. Still, if the All-Star game starters really depicted the players who were performing the best in each conference, and not just a test to see which player’s fans have the best access to the Internet ballot, the starting lineups would have a few tweaks.