As the current NBA hiatus continues due to the coronavirus, we continue handing out our Regular season awards with the 2019-2020 All-NBA teams. As the NBA continues to structure these awards with two guards, two forwards and a center, we will use the same method. This means LeBron will not qualify for the guard position and Anthony Davis will not qualify as a center. When making these decisions, I consider both individual statistics and achievements as well as overall impact on team success. So, without further a due let us have a look at my three all-NBA teams for this past season.
First Team All-NBA
Guard: Luka Doncic
| 28.7 PPG | 8.7 APG | 9.3 RPG | 1.1 SPG | 0.2 BPG | 58.4% TS |
In just his second season in the NBA, Luka Doncic continued to amaze crowds and break records. He has launched Dallas unexpectedly into the playoffs and has become one of the top players in the league. Doncic was third on my MVP ranking and for good reason. He averaged close to a triple-double this year and led the best offense in NBA history. He made his first all star team as a starter for team LeBron and has made an incredible impact on the league with an MVP award looking likely in his future. All of this and more makes Doncic more than worthy for this honour.
Guard: James Harden
| 34.4 PPG | 7.4 APG | 6.4 RPG | 1.7 SPG | 0.9 BPG | 61.6% TS |
James Harden has made a name for himself as the best scorer in the NBA. He is set to take home his third consecutive scoring champion award and has made scoring 34.4 points per game look effortless. While his efficiencies from all ranges have dropped, his is still arguably the best shooting guard in the league. This would be his 7th all-NBA selection, 5th time on first team all-NBA. Harden made his 8th all-star team this season, starting for Team LeBron. Harden made my top 5 in the race for this year’s MVP award and deserves to be on the first team all-NBA.
Forward: LeBron James
| 25.7 PPG | 10.6 APG | 7.9 RPG | 1.2 SPG | 0.5 BPG | 58.2% TS |
LeBron James has continued to defy the ageing process in his 17th season in the NBA. This will be his 16th straight selection on the all-NBA team, 13th time on the first team. LeBron has led his team to the top of the western conference and has put himself back in the MVP conversation. He was the captain of the winning team in this year’s all-star team and leads the league in assists for the first time in his career. He continues to evolve and elevate those around him and there is no question he makes the first team all-NBA.
Forward: Giannis Antetokounmpo
| 29.6 PPG | 5.8 APG | 13.7 RPG | 1.0 SPG | 1.0 BPG | 60.8% TS |
It is a no brainer that Giannis is on the first team all-NBA. He stands atop the MVP leaderboard as he has improved his game since winning the award last year. This will be his fourth all-NBA team appearance, second time on the first team. He is leading the league in PER at 31.6 and is in contention for defensive player of the year. He also leads the league in box plus/minus among many other statistics. There is no question that Giannis has been the best player on the winning-est team in the league this season and has easily earned his spot on the first team all-NBA.
Center: Nikola Jokic
| 20.2 PPG | 6.9 APG | 10.2 RPG | 1.2 SPG | 0.7 BPG | 60.4% TS |
The great debate this year will be whether or not Anthony Davis can be classified as a center and unfortunately, he has not spent enough time on the court at center to qualify for this award in my eyes. Nikola Jokic has once again had an incredible season as a rare playmaking big man. This is his third season in a row averaging a double-double while having at least 6 assists per game. He made his second all-star team as a reserve for Team LeBron and has led a continually surprising Nuggets to third seed in the competitive western conference. This would be Jokic’s second all-NBA selection, on the first team for the second consecutive year and it is well deserved.
Second Team All-NBA
Guard: Damian Lillard
| 28.9 PPG | 7.8 APG | 4.3 RPG | 1.0 SPG | 0.4 BPG | 61.9% TS |
Damian Lillard was incredible this season and kept an otherwise disappointing Portland team in the playoff race. Lillard has produce his best offensive season of his career with career-highs in points, assists, field goal and three-point percentages and true shooting. He made his 5th all-star game on the bench for Team LeBron but was unable to play due to injury. This will be his 5th all-NBA selection, 3rd appearance on second team. We are yet to see if he can carry his team to the eighth seed but regardless of overall team success, Lillard has earned himself a position on the second-team all-NBA.
Guard: Russell Westbrook
| 27.5 PPG | 7.0 APG | 8.0 RPG | 1.7 SPG | 0.3 BPG | 53.9% TS |
Early in the season, Russell Westbrook was having a very disappointing season by his standards. However, once he stopped taking so many jump shots, his season really took off. Westbrook’s rebounding ability became especially useful for the team when they adopted their small-ball line-up and the team’s record dramatically improved. Westbrook made his 9th all-star team this year off the bench for Team LeBron and has helped keep the Rockets in the playoffs despite a late season slump from James Harden. This would be Westbrook’s 9th all-NBA selection, 6th appearance on the second team. There will be some debate as to whether Westbrook deserves to be on the second or third team, but there is no doubt he should make the list.
Forward: Kawhi Leonard
| 26.9 PPG | 5.0 APG | 7.3 RPG | 1.8 SPG | 0.6 BPG | 58.5% TS |
Kawhi Leonard has had his best season yet in the NBA for the LA Clippers. He is averaging career-highs in points, assists and rebounds while leading the Clippers to the second seed in the western conference. Kawhi has continued his on-court dominance and has taken major steps forward in his playmaking surprising everyone with his passing this season. Leonard made his 4th all-star team this year, starting for team Lebron, winning the all-star game MVP and is easily in the top 10 for the league MVP award. This would be Leonard’s 4th all-NBA selection, second consecutive appearance on the second team and will most likely make an all-defensive team to add to his accolades this season.
Forward: Anthony Davis
| 26.7 PPG | 3.1 APG | 9.4 RPG | 1.5 SPG | 2.4 BPG | 61.4% TS |
As mentioned earlier, there will be a lot of debate about which team and position Anthony Davis should be selected in. As Davis did not play enough minutes at the center position and often shared the floor with a pure center, I have to place him at the forward position which moves him down to the second team. Davis has had an incredible year in his first season for the LA Lakers. He is in the top 5 for the MVP award and is my choice for defensive player of the year. Davis and LeBron have led the Lakers to the top of the western conference and Davis was selected to his 7th all-star game as a starter for Team Lebron. This would be his 4th all-NBA selection, his first appearance on the second team. Some will have Davis as part of their first team but unfortunately, I just can’t bring myself to select him as a center.
Center: Joel Embiid
| 23.4 PPG | 3.1 APG | 11.8 RPG | 0.9 SPG | 1.3 BPG | 59.3% TS |
The center position is always the most difficult position when selecting all-NBA team as it can be hard to compare the impacts of big men to their team. Joel Embiid has had another dominant season for the Philadelphia 76ers, helping lead them to the sixth seed in the eastern conference. Embiid made his 3rd all-star team, starting for Team Giannis and looks to make his 3rd defensive team to add to his accolades. This would be his 3rd consecutive all-NBA selection, all appearances on the second team and it is very well deserved.
Third Team All-NBA
Guard: Chris Paul
| 17.7 PPG | 6.8 APG | 4.9 RPG | 1.6 SPG | 0.1 BPG | 60.9% TS |
Chris Paul has given new life to his career in his new role with the OKC Thunder. After departing the Houston Rockets last offseason via trade, all the talk surrounding Chris Paul was about where he would be traded next as the Thunder were expected to begin the rebuilding process. However, Paul remained in OKC and led them all the way to the fifth seed as possibly the most surprising team of the season. Paul made his 10th all-star team coming off the bench for Team LeBron, his first all-star selection since 2016. This would be Paul’s 9th all-NBA selection, his first since 2016 and his second time on the third team. Chris Paul’s all-star season has been one of the feel-good stories of the year and his all-NBA selection would be well deserved.
Guard: Ben Simmons
| 16.7 PPG | 8.2 APG | 7.8 RPG | 2.1 SPG | 0.6 BPG | 60.8% TS |
2018 Rookie of the Year, Ben Simmons, has continued his rise to the top of the league this season with a dominant performance for the Philadelphia 76ers, helping lead them to the sixth seed in the eastern conference. While Simmons offensive stats have remained similar, his major improvement has been on the defensive end. Simmons leads the league in steals and has forced his name into defensive player of the year conversations. Simmons made his 2nd all-star team, coming off the bench for Team LeBron and has even manage to hit a couple of three pointers this season. This would be the first all-NBA selection of his career and he has proven he is able to be the number one option on a team, displaying his dominance while Joel Embiid was injured.
Forward: Jayson Tatum
| 23.6 PPG | 2.9 APG | 7.1 RPG | 1.4 SPG | 0.9 BPG | 56.2% TS |
This season, Jayson Tatum has taken a giant leap forward in his development, becoming the number one option on a talented Celtics team. He is well and truly in the most improved player conversations with improvements in all 5 major statistics while maintaining his shooting percentages despite the increased offensive load. Tatum made his first all-star team, coming off the bench for Team LeBron, while also leading the Celtics to the third seed in the eastern conference. This would be Tatum’s first career all-NBA selection and based off his impressive second half of the season, there should be many more to come in his future career.
Forward: Khris Middleton
| 21.1 PPG | 4.1 APG | 6.2 RPG | 0.9 SPG | 0.1 BPG | 61.9% TS |
Khris Middleton is yet another player that has had a career year this season. He has produced career-highs in points, rebounds and true shooting. Middleton is also a few field goals away from joining the exclusive 50-40-90 club with his most efficient season yet. Middleton made his second all-star team this season, coming off the bench for Team Giannis and has been the second-best player behind Giannis on the best team in the league. Middleton’s improvements should earn him his first career all-NBA selection and he should also join the conversations to make an all-defensive team as he is 8th in the league in defensive rating and 14th in defensive win shares.
Center: Bam Adebayo
| 16.2 PPG | 5.1 APG | 10.5 RPG | 1.2 SPG | 1.3 BPG | 60.6% TS |
My final all-NBA selection goes to my most improved player this year in Bam Adebayo. Adebayo has come from nowhere to now being one of the best centers in the league for the Miami Heat. Bam has taken the league by storm averaging a double-double and improving in all of the 5 major statistics. He has also been a giant on the defensive end, shutting down elite players like Giannis and Anthony Davis, putting him in the conversation for defensive player of the year in just his third season in the NBA. Adebayo earned his first all-star appearance, coming off the bench for Team Giannis and has helped guide the surprising Miami Heat to the fourth seed in the eastern conference. This would be Bam’s first career all-NBA selection and it is one of the best stories to come out of the NBA this season.