The All-Star rosters are set for the Feb. 16 game to be played in New Orleans, and no Sixer was named to the Eastern Conference team.
Thaddeus Young was thought to have a fighting chance, given the 17.3 points and 6.3 rebounds he is averaging this season. But Young was probably hurt by his team’s 15-31 record, as well as his play cooling off in the last couple weeks.
From Dec. 30 through Jan. 5, Young averaged a conference-best 25 points on 56.6 percent shooting (ninth in the conference), 7.7 rebounds, and tied for the league lead with 3.67 steals, helping the Sixers go 3-0. He earned his first ever Player of the Week honor in the process.
“You look at it like things go in momentum,” head coach Brett Brown said. “Things go in swings. Thad had that hot swing where he was Player of the Week [on] that unbelievable trip (west) that we had. He is rolling for a minute and then we lost some games and he had some good games, just not to the standard that he had when he was rewarded with Player of the Week.”
Brown thinks Young’s play more than warrants him being a part of All-Star Weekend, but the coach was quick to point out that Young’s consolation prize is some much-needed rest.
“I wasn’t worried about it,” Young said. “At the end of the day, if it happens it happens. Obviously it didn’t, but congratulations to all the guys who made it and continued success throughout their careers, and hopefully one day I am an All-Star.”
The Eastern Conference reserves include Brooklyn’s Joe Johnson, Toronto’s DeMar DeRozan, Chicago’s Joakim Noah, Washington’s John Wall, Indiana’s Roy Hibbert, Miami’s Chris Bosh and Atlanta’s Paul Millsap
Young will go against Millsap, who was named to his second All-Star Game, on Friday night when the Sixers host the Hawks at Wells Fargo Center.
The two power forwards are putting up comparable numbers this season.
Millsap is averaging 17.8 points and 8.2 rebounds. He has made 41 three-pointers, shooting 36.8 percent from behind the arc.
Young is averaging 17.3 points and 6.3 rebounds. He has made 39 threes, shooting 33.3 percent from behind the arc.
It’s clear that if a decision came down to the two power forwards, Millsap not only had edge on the stat sheet, but also because he's playing for a winning team.