2014 NBA All-Star Game: LeBron James Starting at Center Underrated Sub-Plot
With the starters for the 2014 NBA All-Star Game now settled, there have been two major storylines. One is that this game will feature four first-time starters for the first time since 2000 and the other is that, with the new backcourt/frontcourt voting system, no centers were voted as All-Star starters this season.
Obviously you could get into the fact that Indiana Pacers center Roy Hibbert and Houston Rockets center Dwight Howard were possibly snubs from the starters, but that’s going to be debated relentlessly. What’s more interesting is the fact that Miami Heat star and possible cyborg LeBron James is most likely going to be starting at center for the Eastern Conference.
While it wasn’t always the case since he entered the league in 2003, one of the common narratives regarding James—notably since joining the Heat in 2010—is that he can play any position on the floor. He has the versatility to succeed on the wing, the ball-handling and playmaking ability to succeed as a guard, and the strength, size and quickness to work well in the post. However, James at center is something we’ve never really seen.
It’s hard to imagine LeBron, one of the most electric players in the game, settling for playing with his back to the basket in the All-Star Game even if he is playing the five. However, it’s something that we could theoretically see. With all of the talk about the way he can play all over the floor, it’ll be interesting to see how he fares in that role. Sure, Kevin Love is going to be starting at center for the Western Conference, so it’s not a traditional center for James to match up against, but it certainly qualifies as something interesting to watch come Feb. 16.
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