The NBA’s All-Star Ballot will undergo a significant change this season. The center position will no longer appear on it.
The League, spurned on by its competition committee, elected to change the designation to “frontcourt”, which eliminates the annual glut at the center spot.
This is great news for a host of potential All-Star candidates.
Per TNT‘s David Aldridge:
The league will announce Wednesday a change to its All-Star ballot that will, for the first time, allow fans to vote for three undefined “frontcourt” players instead of having to vote for two forwards and a center. With more and more teams playing smaller than in the past, the definition of “center” was becoming increasingly difficult — not to mention finding enough quality big men for whom to vote. For years, for example, the Spurs have listed Tim Duncan as a power forward, even though everyone on earth knew he was their starting center. And so when it came to All-Star balloting, Duncan would take up a forward spot in a very crowded field of Western Conference stars instead of his logical spot in the middle. This was good for Duncan, who surely would have made his 13 All-Star teams anyway, but it often cost another forward a shot.
“It makes sense,” VP of Basketball Operations Stu Jackson. “It made sense to our Competition Committee. Having a center is the only specific position that was singled out on the ballot. It just seemed a little outdated and didn’t represent the way our game has evolved. By the same token, it also affords the same opportunity, if you have two good centers in a given year, pick ‘em both. They both can be selected. Which is impossible right now.”
Members of the media make the ballot selections. It will certainly be interesting to see which “frontcourt” players make it this season.
The new All-Star ballot will be unveiled on November 13, with the mid-season showcase set to take place on February 17 in Houston.