Every year we see the same thing. Fans are outraged that their favourite potential NBA All-Star has been “snubbed” by both the fan vote (starters) and the coaches (bench). They get up in arms about it and blame the NBA for an imperfect — if not corrupt — system. I think I may have the solution to the situation — but I need your thoughts on my proposal.
For the All-Star starting lineups, we retain the current populist system, which allows the fans to select their favourite players for both teams’ starting fives.
For the bench, rather than letting the coaches select the seven reserves, we let them select six of the bench players. At that point, the league throws open the floodgates for the fans to select the player they think was “snubbed” the most in both the East and the West to make the lineup.
What this does is let the populist vote include the likes of Yao Ming and BJ Armstrong in the starting lineup, regardless of whether they’ve played a game or not that season, and for the coaches to make a good judgement on the benches. However, it also allows the hardcore fans, who care enough, and are familiar with more than four NBA players not named Shawn Kemp, to vote in the player they feel missed out the most.
It will repair the NBA’s yearly public relations nightmare surrounding the “snubbing” of certain players, which is generally repaired by inserting the player that fans shout loudest for as an injury replacement (as will likely happen with either LaMarcus Aldridge or Kevin Love this season).
In terms of timing, the vote would be maintained totally electronically, via the NBA’s site, in a very short, discrete period — say 48 hours. This would ensure that it does not hold up preparations for the All-Star Weekend.
So, what say you? Can this system work and alleviate some problems? Let me know in the comments or on twitter.