The All-NBA teams were announced today, and Chris Paul and Blake Griffin were named to the first and second teams, respectively.
This was Paul’s fifth time being named to the All-NBA team and third time making the first team (also made it in 2008 and 2012). Meanwhile, Griffin’s selection marked the second time he made an All-NBA team, as he also made the second team last season.
Joining Paul on the first team were LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Kobe Bryant and Tim Duncan. No surprises there. Moreover, the second team comprised of Carmelo Anthony, Russell Westbrook, Tony Parker and Marc Gasol alongside Griffin.
Here is the NBA.com press release on Paul making the All-NBA first team:
Paul, an All-NBA First Team selection for the third time, had a league-best 4.26 assist-to-turnover ratio; he had 13 games in which he dished at least 11 assists while committing no more than one turnover. The 2013 All-Star Game MVP, Paul averaged 16.9 points, ranked second in assists with 9.7 apg and paced the league in steals with 2.41 spg.
Paul is unanimously considered the best point guard in the league and his selection confirmed that notion. Griffin’s selection, however, implies that he was considered the best power forward in the league by the media — he was the only power forward to make the first or second team.
Depending on whether you consider LeBron James or Carmelo Anthony a 4, those two would have the theoretical advantage over Griffin. And the voters put David Lee on the third team, which is a bit head-scratching and weakens the credence of Griffin’s argument slightly.
Still, Griffin has as great of a case as anyone for top power forward honors and it’s good to see him get his proper due. None of this really matters as much more than a historical footnote, of course, but it’s fun to speculate and rank players.
Paul and Griffin’s selections continue the Clippers’ appreciation in award voting this postseason. Paul also finished fourth in MVP voting and made the All-Defense first team. VP of Basketball Operations Gary Sacks finished second in Executive of the Year. And, as we all remember so well, Jamal Crawford finished second in Sixth Man of the Year.
While the Clippers didn’t advance as far in the postseason as they would have liked, they undoubtedly had a remarkable regular season, and all of their success (and near-success) in these postseason awards is just another sign of validation.