The All-Star reserves were announced last night and unfortunately, Jaren Jackson Jr. wasn’t selected to be a part of the prestigious event. The Memphis Grizzlies are already being represented by Ja Morant who was selected as a starter, but with the current success of the team, there was speculation that they were deserving of two All-Stars. That could still be the case since there will be an opening for an injury replacement on the All-Star roster.
During the Inside the NBA broadcast revealing the reserves, Draymond Green—who was selected as a reserve—was a part of the panel discussing the selections. Green who is currently recovering from a back injury set the record straight and said that he will definitely miss the All-Star game.
This now creates an opening roster spot for players in the western conference. If the consistency with the selection process remains, that would mean that the replacement must play a frontcourt position. There isn’t a remaining sure-fire pick for the remaining spot, which raises the question of does Jaren have enough of a case to be chosen?
Jaren Jackson’s case to be selected as an injury replacement
There are only two frontcourt players worthy of making the All-Star game from the western conference and that is Brandon Ingram and Anthony Davis. Although Davis is averaging great numbers statically, he has missed too many games to be considered an All-Star. Brandon Ingram has an intriguing case since he’s played great all season but his team success hasn’t been the best.
Ingram is averaging 22.5 points, 6.0 rebounds, and a career-high 5.2 assists per game. There is a significant difference numbers-wise as Jackson is averaging 16.6 points, 5.8 rebounds, and a career-high 2.3 blocks per game. Adam Silver will have to decide who has a greater impact on their team and that should go in favor of Jaren Jackson Jr.
It was mainly due to his stellar play as to why the Grizzlies were able to continue being great while Morant was out with an injury. Although Ingram is statistically having a good year, he’s essentially putting up empty stats with the New Orleans Pelicans being such a disappointment this year.
With frontcourt players, Jackson has a great case to be selected as a replacement, however, there is one obstacle in front of him and making his first All-Star game appearance. As we’ve seen in the past, injury replacement players don’t have to play the same position as the player they are replacing. If that’s the case it is fairly likely that the nod will go to Dejounte Murray of the San Antonio Spurs, who is having an amazing season averaging 19.6 points, 8.5 rebounds, and 9.1 assists, which are all career highs.
The main advantage Jackson has is the success of the Grizzlies and if we’ve learned anything from the past is that winning does take precedent. It will be interesting to see what the NBA decides but no matter the result, Jaren is an All-Star in the hearts of Memphis Grizzlies fans.