The second round of All-Star voting returns came out on Dec. 26 and right now your starting frontcourt in the West is Kevin Durant, Blake Griffin and Dwight Howard. The NBA makes fans vote for three frontcourt players, they no longer have it separated out by forwards and centers. So Dwight Howard is not the starting center, he is just part of the starting frontcourt, however, for this discussion we will consider him the All-Star starting center. Now Howard has started in the All-Star Game six straight times, most of them have been well deserved, but this year he has a little competition. His biggest competitor, DeMarcus Cousins, a.k.a. Boogie, is having an all-around career year. Let’s take a look at both these players so far this season and see who really deserves to start in the All-Star Game. I do understand the All-Star starters are voted in; it is not based on the player’s actual stats or how they have played. For example, Kobe Bryant is leading the West backcourt voting and he has only played six games this year and should not be even on the ballot at this point, but it is a popularity contest. However, I believe that at this point Cousins might have a gripe that he only 12th in frontcourt players, with Chandler Parsons sitting ahead of him.
Howard is having a good year offensively, especially after a terrible year last year for the Lakers. He is averaging 18 points per game on 58 percent shooting. However, like most seasons he is shooting terribly from the free throw line, this year he is at 57 percent. Now Howard is helping the Houston Rockets average 105 points per game, tied for third in the NBA, but Howard only takes about 11 shots per game. Therefore, he is not the biggest reason for all the points per game for the Rockets. Lastly, Dwight has never been much of a passer, he has not averaged more than two assists per game; this year he is averaging 1.8 per game.
Now let’s look at Cousins’ numbers, first he is having a career year, averaging 22.7 point per game on 50 percent shooting from the field. Cousins also shots the most shots of any center in the league with 16.8 shots per game, therefore, 50 percent is extremely good for that many attempts. Furthermore, Cousins is shooting 71 percent from the line and gets to the free throw line almost nine times a game. Now where Cousins excels for a center is assists, he is currently averaging three assists per game, tied for first in the league among centers. Right now it is hard to say there is a better offensive center in the league right now.