Commentary

Odom or Aldridge for last All-Star spot?

Picking All-Stars out West is a chore. Our Insiders debate who gets the final F nod.

Updated: January 27, 2011, 12:58 PM ET
By Chris Broussard and Ric Bucher | ESPN The Magazine
Lamar Odom and LaMarcus AldridgeAndrew D. Bernstein/Getty ImagesConvincing cases can be made for Lamar Odom and LaMarcus Aldridge to get All-Star bids this season.

The only thing Ric Bucher and Chris Broussard like to do more than report on the NBA is argue about the NBA. So we decided to combine those two skills for Insider's weekly One-on-One series, in which they'll debate the hottest topics in the association.

Question: Who deserves the final West All-Star forward spot, LaMarcus Aldridge or Lamar Odom?

BROUSSARD: It's going to be as tough as ever to pick the Western Conference All-Star team. There are plenty of deserving players who will be left off, and no position is more competitive than the forward spot. Even if we assume that Pau Gasol and Tim Duncan will be selected as centers, there are still not enough slots. With those two out of the picture, my five all-star forwards would be Kevin Durant, Dirk Nowitzki, Carmelo Anthony, Blake Griffin and LaMarcus Aldridge, with apologies to the very deserving Kevin Love.

BUCHER: It's hard for me to leave K-Love off my list of five, too, but the Minnesota Timberwolves' record just makes it too hard to justify. And as miraculous as the Portland Trail Blazers have been in light of all their setbacks and as big a part in that as Aldridge has had, he's not my fifth, either. Lamar Odom is.

Ric Bucher

NBA Reporter, ESPN The Magazine Senior Writer