Grizzlies fans blast first NBA All-Star voting returns of 2023-24

Oct 30, 2023; Memphis, Tennessee, USA; Memphis Grizzlies guard Desmond Bane (22) reacts after being
Oct 30, 2023; Memphis, Tennessee, USA; Memphis Grizzlies guard Desmond Bane (22) reacts after being / Petre Thomas-USA TODAY Sports

Thursday afternoon, the first round of NBA All-Star Game voting returns were released to the public and, by and large, Memphis Grizzlies fans are severely underwhelmed.

Despite what their lackluster 11-23 record may indicate, Taylor Jenkins' club has consistently found itself rolling out numerous players who have been producing at All-Star caliber levels.

Interestingly enough, however, the only Grizzlies player found listed within this first batch of results is centerpiece Ja Morant, a man who has suited up for just eight of the team's 34 games as a result of a 25-game suspension to start the year.

As things currently stand, he's received the 14-most votes in the Western Conference.

Now, while Morant has undoubtedly played up to his already established All-NBA and perennial All-Star pedigree since returning to the hardwood on December 19, a large portion of the fanbase has been found voicing their displeasures on X (formerly Twitter) about how wild they believe it to be that the two-weeks of action their point guard has seen is viewed as more worthy of votes than Desmond Bane and his unbelievable 33-game stretch of play through this point.

Grizzlies fans furious about lack of All-Star votes for Desmond Bane

One user kept things rather simple by stating that Bane is someone who needs to be prioritized during the next voting stage.

Another proved to be far more volatile in their NSFW reaction to Bane's exclusion from the results, specifically pointing out how Los Angeles Lakers guard Austin Reaves received 170,500 votes even though he's started a mere 10 games this season and boasts lesser stats than the Grizzlies stud in virtually every category.

One fan went as far as to suggest that the 25-year-old could be on his way toward becoming the 2020s version of Mike Conley, a player who, while in Memphis, consistently produced like an All-Star though was never able to receive such an illustrious nod throughout his 12-year tenure.

Currently in his fourth year in the league, Bane is unequivocally putting forth his best season yet. Tabbed as a first-time All-Star candidate coming into the year, the savvy guard has managed to live up to the hype as he's posted career-best averages virtually all across the board with 24.5 points, 5.2 assists, 4.5 rebounds, and 1.1 steals per game.

To put this into perspective, he is putting up better scoring numbers than James Harden (ranks fourth in guard voting), Klay Thompson (ranks ninth), and Kyrie Irving (ranks fifth) and is dishing out more assists than both Irving and Anthony Edwards (ranks sixth).

Granted, there will be two more rounds of fan votes that will take place between now and February 16 star-studded weekend, followed by a round of votes by all 30 of the league's head coaches to determine the reserves, so hope is by no means lost for Bane to claim his first All-Star nod.

Still, to say round one's results were disappointing would be an egregious understatement.