Blogtable Archive

Blogtable: Which player is destined to become a perennial All-Star?

Each week, we ask our stable of scribes across the globe to weigh in on the most important NBA topics of the day.

NBA.com Staff

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In the last few days and months, 2013 Draft picks C.J. McCollum, Steven Adams, Rudy Gobert and Giannis Antetokounmpo all received contract extensions worth at least $100 million. Will any of these players become a perennial All-Star?

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Steve Aschburner: Giannis Antetokounmpo. I’m setting the two big guys aside right away, because the All-Star Game isn’t much of a showcase for what those two do best. Defense? Rim protection? In an ASG? There’s a reason the ballot was changed to “frontcourt,” eradicating the “center” position, a few years back. McCollum is a sweet player but he’ll constantly be trying to make the West roster as Portland’s second All-Star guard, a tough go. Antetokounmpo, on the other hand, has the versatility to intrigue East coaches for a variety of reasons when they choose the reserves. Also, I think I buried the lead: The Bucks’ marvelous young star is going to be the best overall player of this bunch.

Fran Blinebury: Giannis Antetokounmpo is the No. 1 candidate simply because of his physical gifts and raw skills. He’s barely scratched the surface of what is possible and has the potential to become an elite level All-Star. I expect C.J. McCollum, Steven Adams and Rudy Gobert to all make All-Star appearances at some time or another during their careers. But I wouldn’t pencil in any of them as “perennial” pick.

Scott Howard-Cooper: Giannis Antetokounmpo. The others are possibilities — McCollum is going to have a really nice career, but being in the same backcourt as Damian Lillard could hurt his All-Star chances — while the “Greek Freak” is in the best position if we’re talking perennial. Once he makes it the first time, it won’t be close to the last.

Shaun Powell: The key word is “perennial” and I say nay, if the definition of perennial is 5 All-Star trips or more. While they all have their obvious gifts and show promise, none appear to be special. And you can tell a special player right away. That said, Giannis and CJ can score and help in multiple ways, so they’re the closest to being franchise players. And they still have a ways to go.

John Schuhmann: There’s too much talent in the league to say that any of those guys will definitely be “perennial” All-Stars, but Antetokounmpo has the best shot. He’s obviously one of a kind physically. He’s only 21 and his skills are developing every year. And finally, nobody else on that list will have the ball in his hands as much as he will. When you have the ball, you get the numbers.

Sekou Smith: Where is Skee-Lo when you need him? Giannis Antetokoumpo is my best bet to reach All-Star status from this group. But I don’t know if any of them will reach “perennial” status in that department. The big man crop in the Western Conference is thick at the top and the guard ranks are even deeper. And let’s be honest, there was a time when $100 million status meant you were either already an All-Star or locked into that sort of trajectory in the near future. Not in today’s NBA.

Ian Thomsen: Giannis Antetokounmpo is the most likely candidate because he will be driving his franchise with the ball in his hands. If Milwaukee becomes an annual playoff team then he will be not only deserving of the All-Star credit but also noticed by fans and rivals, because he really is a freakish talent in today’s game. The others — McCollum, Adams and Gobert — are going to have less say over the success of their teams, which puts them at the mercy of forces beyond their control. For a blue-collar player like Adams to become an All-Star, the guess here is that his Thunder team will need to be contending for championships.

Lang Whitaker: I think Adams will be one of those guys we see year after year, since he plays a position where it’s tough to find quality players. I think McCollum and Giannis will make a few All-Star appearances apiece, but they have to deal with a logjam at their positions, including within their own teams. Rudy Gobert is a really good player for the Utah Jazz, but I don’t think he’s one of the two or three best players on his own team, much less at his position in his Conference.

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