The voting has started this week for this year’s WNBA All-Star Game in Seattle on July 22. It’s always an exciting time of the year, as the season is well under way, and teams’ fortunes are starting to take shape. The All-Star Game always has it’s share of players who, according to public opinion, seemingly should or should not have made the ASG roster. And as I made my first 10 picks yesterday, I had to ask myself, “What makes an ‘All-Star”? Who really deserves to be picked to play in an All-Star Game? Is it really simply the “stars” of the game that I should be voting for?
One of the best examples of the uncertainty of who does or does not belong on an ASG roster this year is Maya Moore. Do I have to vote for her simply because of name recognition? Or do I leave her out because she is not shooting nearly as well as seasons past? She is in the top ten in steals, assists, and 3 point percentage, but beyond that, her teammate Sylvia Fowles is having a far better season, and the best season of her career. She is also doing it by shooting a clear 30 percent better than Moore is.
But does Maya Moore get left out because a player like Kayla McBride or Tiffany Hayes is averaging 3 or 4 points more per game? Does stardom come down to a career of excellence or should it come down to season by season performance? I think from a traditional sense, Maya Moore should be an All-Star this year, because she is one of the biggest, if not the biggest star the league has. And in the end, my opinion doesn’t really matter, because Maya Moore will no doubt be in the All-Star Game this year simply because of that fact. But as I start looking at this season’s stats, as I look over this year’s league leaders, I still have to really think about whether I should pick someone who’s having a better year individually than Moore, even when her team is clearly far and away the best team in the league. But at the end of the day, that’s the fun and excitement of All-Star voting. You get to have your say about who you think deserves to play in All-Star Game, whether the stats back you up or not.