NBA News: NBA to Remove Center Position from All-Star Ballot

After weighing the pros and cons over the summer, the NBA has decided to make a drastic change to the voting process for All-Star games.

Reportedly, the league will no longer have the center position on the ballot according to David Aldridge of NBA.com:

“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.”

On November 13, the league will debut the new-look ballot for the 2013 All-Star Game. This season’s All-Star game is scheduled to be played on February 17 on the Houston Rockets’ home floor of the Toyota Center.

As a result of the new rule the NBA is implementing, voters will not be forced to pick two forwards and one center. Instead, the league will let fans pick three frontcourt players rather than restricting the three votes to two separate positions.

The reasoning behind the new All-Star ballot is not to limit fans to vote for players at the center position.

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Kevin Garnett, Chris Bosh and Tim Duncan are the first players to come to mind as they have basically played the center position for the majority of their careers in the league, but are listed at power forward. With no restrictions on voting positions in the frontcourt, more forwards will get an opportunity to make All-Star appearances rather than an unworthy center taking the spot of a more deserving forward.

Ironically enough, after the Los Angeles Lakers traded Andrew Bynum to the Philadelphia 76ers and received Dwight Howard in return, the consensus was that these two would battle it out as the starting centers in the All-Star Game for many years to come.

It’s safe to say that Howard will continue to be voted the starter of one of the three frontcourt players in the West, but Bynum may end up taking a backseat to superstar-caliber forwards in the Eastern Conference.

A few big-names that come to mind in the East are Bosh, LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony, Amar’e Stoudemire and Josh Smith. The first three mentioned may ultimately become the starters for the East in February leaving Bynum to come off the bench or battle for a spot on the All-Star roster with Garnett, Paul Pierce, Luol Deng, Roy Hibbert, Danny Granger, Al Horford and Nene Hilario.

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In case you missed it: Dwight Howard talks about his Lakers debut.
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