Andre Drummond is a big reason why.
The Pistons big man posted a fairly pedestrian 13 points and seven rebounds — but seven assists! — in a 131-107 throttling of the Phoenix Suns on Wednesday night, but he’s been a force in the team’s resurgence. Drummond averages 14.3 points and a league-best 15.2 rebounds per game, while upping his once-horrendous free-throw shooting (39.3 percent for his career) to 63 percent so far.
Drummond should be an All-Star, writes the Sporting News’ Sean Deveney, who revealed his picks from the Eastern Conference on Thursday.
“There have been two big knocks against Drummond in his NBA career,” writes Deveney, who slots Drummond as a reserve. “The first is that he does not always give maximum effort and seems to sail through whole chunks of games. The second is that he is a miserable free-throw shooter. Well, his effort and his free throws have drastically improved, and he leads the league in rebounding. Add the Pistons’ good start, and it is a solid case.”
And, while Deveney notes in his “case against” that Drummond’s “throwback” low-post game doesn’t necessarily mesh with “today’s NBA,” he writes “there’s been very little to pick on about Drummond’s game this year. Heck, he’s even averaging 3.7 assists.”
Keep in mind, the NBA is using a new format to construct its All-Star teams this season. Gone are teams representing the Eastern and Western confernces. Instead, the two captains will draft their teams, drawing from a pool of players voted as starters and reserves. The captains are the top vote-getting starter from each conference, but can draft players regardless of their conference affiliation.
The All-Star Game will be Feb. 18 at Staples Center in Los Angeles.