NBA All-Star Game: Odds, Rosters, Predictions and more

The 2019 NBA All-Star Game will tip off in Charlotte’s Spectrum Center Sunday at 8:00 p.m. ET. To get our readers prepared for the game, we have compiled all the knowledge every NBA fan needs to know as we prepare to cap off another great All-Star Weekend.  

Betting Odds:

Who Wins?

Lebron James and his star-studded lineup, nicknamed Team Lebron, will enter the 2019 NBA All-Star game as 6-point favorites against Team Giannis, according to OddsShark.com.

All-Star Game MVP?

According to OddsShark.com, Giannis Antetokounmpo and Kevin Durant open as the favorites to win the All-Star Game’s MVP award, with both of them having +600 odds to win. Lebron James sits just behind the pair with a +650 chance of winning the award. James will be looking to repeat after capturing the elusive award in last year’s All-Star Game.

How to Watch:

Date: Sunday, February 17th

Time: 8 p.m. ET.

Location: Spectrum Center – Charlotte, NC

TV: TNT

Streaming: fuboTV

Team Rosters:

Team Lebron

Starters: Lebron James, Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, Kawhi Leonard, James Harden

Reserves: Anthony Davis, Klay Thompson, Damian Lillard, Ben Simmons, LaMarcus Aldridge, Karl-Anthony Towns, Bradley Beal

Special Addition: Dwyane Wade

Team Giannis

Starters: Giannis Antetokounmpo, Stephen Curry, Joel Embiid, Paul Goerge, Kemba Walker

Reserves: Khris Middleton, Nikola Jokic, Russell Westbrook, Blake Griffin, D’Angelo Russell, Nikola Vucevic, Kyle Lowry

Special Addition: Dirk Nowitzki

Our Predictions:

Who Wins? 

Here at Hoops Table, we believe Team Giannis will defeat Team Lebron in this year’s NBA All-Star Game!

MVP?

Our pick for MVP is Giannis Antetokounmpo!

Score?

Team Giannis: 142, Team Lebron: 138.

 

 

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MVP Update: Comparing the top-3 MVP candidates as we hit the All-Star break

The Most Valuable Player Award. This award is quite possibly the single most coveted award for a individual player, with the next closest likely being the Finals MVP Award. The award usually goes to the player who has been the best among his competition, the best of the league. Last year’s award was, for the most part, a two-man race. Lebron James and James Harden duked it out down the stretch, but the committee ultimately decided to go with James Harden, who wowed crowds around the league with his high octane offense which helped push the Rockets to finish first in the Western Conference. This year’s award however, isn’t so cut-and-dry. Many players have made huge cases for them to be given this prestigious award heading into the All-Star break. So here at Hoops Table, we decided to compare the top-3 MVP candidates as we hit the pause button on the regular season.

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1) Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks

Season stats thus far: 27.2 ppg, 12.7 rebounds, 6.0 assists, 1.4 blocks, and 1.4 steals

Season Analysis:

Giannis has definitely lived up to his nickname, “The Greek Freak, this season. The 5-year NBA veteran is averaging career-highs in almost every category on the stat sheet. Night in and night out, Giannis and the Milwaukee Bucks continue to find a way to scrap out games and keep themselves at the top of the Eastern Conference. “The Alphabet”, as people call him, has been destroying defenders left and right this season and has definitely made a massive case for MVP this season. Without the other two players on our list, Giannis would definitely be the clear-cut choice for the MVP any other time. Not to mention the fact that Giannis is averaging career-highs in nearly every category, he also is playing nearly 34 minutes per game, a considerably large workload for the young player. When Giannis does take the floor however, he leaves his mark on the game like few other players in the league can. He possesses a ken passing ability which helps his teammates get great open looks, which leads to easy buckets. If Giannis can continue his MVP-caliber play throughout the rest of the season, he will definitely be a hard pass when it comes to deciding the winner of the prestigious award.

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2) James Harden, Houston Rockets

Season stats thus far: 36.6 ppg, 6.7 rebounds, 7.7 assists, 2.2 steals, and 0.8 blocks

Season Analysis:

Their are only two words with which one can describe James Harden: Offensive Mastermind. “The Beard”, as people call him, has been an absolute monster this season. Averaging career-highs in points per game, steals per game, blocks per game and more has Harden looking like the clear frontrunner. While shooting 44% from the field, Harden has pulled the Rockets out of their early-season slump and into the top seeds in the West. The 7x All-Star has been lights out from the three, shooting a impressive 37% percent from behind the arc. The three-point ace has immortalized his famous step-back jump shot this year as he has destroyed defender after defender and sliced up defenses with the precision of a chef. With his ability to change directions quickly as well as his ability to take any defender one-on-one and win the matchup, Harden cuts deep into the opposing team’s defense and gets to the rim or takes a high percentage look, which has been nearly everywhere on the floor for him this season. The incredible offensive show Harden has been able to put together this year has put him in the history books for sure, but is it enough to make him repeat as the MVP. Only time will tell.

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3) Paul George, Oklahoma City Thunder

Season stats thus far: 28.7 ppg, 8.0 rebounds, 4.1 assists, 2.3 steals, and 0.5 blocks

Season Analysis:

When Paul George went down with his gruesome leg injury several years ago, many NBA fans and experts alike believed he would never go back to being the player he once was. Oh boy, were they wrong. “Playoff P” is having his best season ever along side superstar teammate Russell Westbrook. George is averaging career-highs in points per game, steals per game, rebounds per game, and is tied for career-highs in both blocks per game and assists per game. The 28-year-old veteran has been one of the main reasons why the Thunder have managed to stay in the top few seeds of the highly competitive Western Conference. Not only has PG-13 made a great case for MVP, but he has also made one for DPOY.  Currently, the Thunder sit two seeds ahead of the Rockets in the West, despite the massive push being made by fellow MVP candidate James Harden. George has finally stepped into the role Oklahoma City was hoping he would become and more: the best player on the Thunder this season. While Westbrook has been fantastic throughout his career, there’s no question that without “Playoff P”, the Thunder wouldn’t be able to challenge the throne of the Western Conference kings: the Golden State Warriors. But with him, this dream is a very real reality for Oklahoma City. If Paul George can keep this streak alive until the end of the season, he could be looking at taking home not one, but two NBA awards in the offseason.

Notable Exceptions: Nikola Jokic, Denver Nuggets, Kevin Durant, Golden State Warriors, Kawhi Leonard, Toronto Raptors, Joel Embiid, Philadelphia 76ers.

 

MVP race

Ranking the top-five players in the Eastern Conference

The Eastern Conference has, for the last several years, been viewed as the weakest conference. Many analysts will often tell you that all the “superstar” caliber players have ventured to the West and that the East fails to compare to the star-power formed in the opposite conference. In several respects, this is a true statement considering the talent that has ventured out West, with the most notable being LeBron James who, by leaving his beloved hometown, officially ended the Cavaliers juggernaut that controlled the East. While the reign of the king has ended in the East, I believe the talent has not ended by any means. There are still incredible talents that call the Eastern Conference home, despite what others believe. So without further ado, here are the top-five players in the Eastern Conference ranked on Hoops Table!

 

1. Giannis Antetokounmpo

17′-18′ Notable Season Stats: 26.9 ppg, 4.8 assists, 1.5 steals, 10 rebounds, and 1.4 blocks

Here’s Why:

Giannis was “Poetry in Motion” when he stepped on the court for the Bucks this season. The 23-year-old reassured fans that he was the cornerstone of the franchise with a killer season that showed why he has potential to be one of the best, if not the best player in the league one day. If shooting 52% from the field and dropping insane numbers on the stat line don’t have you convinced, Giannis being in the conversation for MVP right from the start should definitely impress you. This All Star played 80 games this season, so clearly health was not an issue for the Greek Freak. Not only did he start every game he played in, the Bucks won significantly more when he was on the court with his WS (win shares) standing at 12.4. The Greek Freak has repeatedly showed the NBA community that he is one of the best in the East and its time we take notice.

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2. Joel Embiid

17′-18′ Notable Season Stats: 22.9 ppg, 3.2 assists, 1.8 blocks, and 11 rebounds

Here’s Why:

“Trust the Process” finally became a reality this year for the Philadelphia 76ers. Saric, Covington, and Simmons played a huge role for the team, as did others, but none were quite as impactful as Embiid was for his ball club. Embiid seems to be the cornerstone of the franchise for Philadelphia and for good reason. From his defensive presence to his ability on the offensive end, Embiid has all the skills necessary to become a legendary center, that is if he can stay healthy. Embiid only played 63 games last season, meaning that he wasn’t always on the floor for the 76ers when they bounced forward in the process by winning 52 games during the regular season. When Joel was on the hardwood though, he was fighting for every rebound and dominating opponents in the post, with his stats reflecting that. Joel is one of the most talented and dominant players in the Eastern Conference, which earned him this spot on the list.

Philadelphia 76ers V Minnesota Timberwolves

 

3. Kyrie Irving

17′-18′ Notable Season Stats: 24.2 ppg, 5.1 assists, 1.1 steals, 3.8 rebounds, and 0.3 blocks

Here’s Why:

Kyrie Irving has made a name for himself in the NBA as being a elite scorer with insane handles and explosive first-steps that make a mockery of his defenders. The 27-year-old is one of the best point guards in the league and has a great case for being the best point guard in the Eastern Conference. He is the highest ranking guard on our list and for good reason. Kyrie’s shooting and ball-handling is among the best in the league. Kyrie shot 49% from the floor and 40% from behind the arc, while attempting 6.8 three-pointers in a game with the Celtics. The battle between Joel and Kyrie for the number two spot on our list was fierce, but I ultimately chose to put Kyrie at three because of Joel’s potential to be even better then he is now, while Kyrie seems to have shown all his tricks thus far. Health was also an issue for Kyrie last season since he only got to 60 games with the Celtics before being pulled from the rest of the season by medical staff. If Kyrie can figure out how to work out the few kinks he still has in his game, then he can maybe advance into the second spot on our list.

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4. DeMar DeRozan

17′-18′ Notable Season Stats: 23 ppg, 5.2 assists, 3.9 rebounds, 1.1 steals, and 0.3 blocks

Here’s Why:

DeMar DeRozan has become one of the most exciting players to watch in today’s NBA. His patented mid-range game makes him dangerous as soon as he exits the locker room. While his old-school brand of basketball may be a dying art, DeMar is showing no signs of slowing down. He can attack the rim at will and collapse a defense with the skill that many guards in the East lack, while also being able to jet a pass out to his co-captain Kyle Lowry. DeMar is crucial for the Raptors as they win significantly more games when he is playing on the floor, 9.6 games to be exact. DeRozan can punish a defense and hurt you in so many different ways on the offensive end, which is the reason why he earned his spot on this list.

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5. John Wall

17′-18′ Notable Season Stats: 19. ppg, 9.6 assists, 3.7 rebounds, 1.4 steals, and 1.1 blocks

Here’s Why:

John Wall is an incredibly special player. He plays like a monster for the Washington Wizards whenever he steps out on the court. John is often considered the most versatile point guard in the NBA because of his ability to shoot the ball accurately from the floor while dishing out lightning quick passes to raw shooters like teammate Bradley Beal. Wall is the unspoken leader of the Wizards and seems to always find a way to outwork his opponents and give his team the best chance they have to win night in and night out. John was, however, plagued by injuries which only allowed him to play 41 times this year. He is a major difference maker in close games, while also being consistent on a nightly basis. If Wall can stay healthy and put on a great show next year, then we could see him shoot up the list in a very short amount of time.

john wall

 

 

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