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The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

Impact of fan voting in NBA All-Star game


With the NBA All-Star game coming up this weekend, fans will flock to the United Center in Chicago to watch the players they voted for start the game. Hundreds of thou- sands more will watch from home.

The NBA All-Star weekend has become an annual tradition that never fails to cap- ture the attention of the nation, including people who don’t even follow basketball.

Every year, it seems something changes about the format of the All-Star game, but there is one thing that, for the most part, has remained the same: how the players that participate are selected. Since the first All- Star game, the participants have been chosen by a fan vote.

Before 2017, fan voting was the only factor that determined who got to play in the All-Star game. However, after fans started to utilize the power of social media to try to get lesser deserving players voted into the game, the system was changed so that fan votes only accounted for half of a player’s total votes, with media and player votes making up the other half.

This recent change highlighted the big- gest flaw in the system, that undeserving players could get voted into the game just because the fans make it so. Because of this, some people would argue that allowing fans to vote for All-Stars is a flawed system. However, now that the system has changed, and there are other parties involved in All-Star voting, I would say that only the most deserving players will be selected.

Of course, there are always going to be players who didn’t make the cut who feel like they should have been selected, but this will always be the case no matter who selects the All-Stars.

Another reason that people are against fan voting is the fact that All-Star selections

are a prestigious honor, not just something that is all fun and games. Players can use All-Star appearances as part of their resume when negotiating contracts, and All-Star game appearances are taken into consideration when players make a case for the Hall of Fame.

Personally, I don’t have a problem with the fan voting system for the All-Star game. For one thing, the current system has been corrected so that fan voting is no longer the only determining factor in who makes it to the game. Even when players who don’t have the credentials to be an All-Star get a large amount of fan votes, there are checks and balances in place to offset that situation.

Also, I think the purpose of the All-Star game has changed over the years. When the idea was first introduced, the game was meant to be a way to show off the league’s best talent.

Nowadays, I think All-Star weekend is meant to be a way for the players to unwind, have some fun and to break up the monot- ony of the long 82 game season. This is evident in the fact that the All-Star game is no longer East vs. West, the team’s are drafted by their captains. This allows off the court friendships to shine on the court in a game that really doesn’t mean a whole lot.

The cash prize on the line isn’t very life changing to the league’s superstars playing on very lucrative contracts either. Also, this year’s format and rule changes are shifting everyone’s focus to honoring Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna Bryant after their unfortunate passing. Ultimately, the All- Star game has become so much more than a showcase of talent.

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