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NBA All-Star Game 2023: Recent fan voting format seems designed to stop one other Andrew Wiggins situation


Fan voting for the 2023 NBA All-Star Game will begin on Dec. 20 and run through Jan. 21, the league announced in a press release on Thursday. This season’s All-Star Weekend is about for Feb. 17-19 in Salt Lake City, with the Utah Jazz hosting the festivities for the primary time since 1993. 

In a notable change from previous years, voting will now not be allowed on Twitter, and will probably be restricted to the NBA’s app and/or website. Moreover, fans will only be allowed to vote once per day — though there will probably be select dates where votes count triple — and can have to submit a full ballott of three frontcourt players and two backcourt players for every conference. 

Though the league didn’t give an official reason for this transformation, it seems likely that it’s an try and prevent one other Andrew Wiggins situation. The Golden State Warriors forward not only made his All-Star debut last season, but began the sport largely because he received a considerable fan vote tally of three,452,586 — third behind only Nikola Jokic and LeBron James within the Western Conference front court. A big percentage of those votes got here on social media, due to a campaign from the Warriors and K Pop star, BamBam

All-Star starters are determined through a mix of voting by fans, players and choose media, with the latter two groups submitting only one ballot. But while fan votes should not the one factor, they do account for 50 percent of every players’ final weighted rating, while player and media votes account for 25 percent each. Thus, Wiggins’ huge edge in fan voting allowed him to sneak right into a starting spot despite receiving only 46 votes from players and 4 votes from the media last season. 

Wiggins, to his credit, played well last season and even when he wasn’t voted in as a starter, had a very good likelihood to make the team as a reserve, especially given a number of the injuries to big-name players reminiscent of Anthony Davis, Kawhi Leonard, Paul George and Zion Williamson. His performance over the rest of the season, and particulary within the playoffs as he helped the Warriors win the title, also helped make the choice look less misplaced on reflection. 

While Wiggins starting wasn’t ultimately that big of a deal, the best way by which he got there offered a transparent playbook for teams and players to utilize the social media voting format of their favor. And though unlikely provided that player and media votes do still matter, it opened up the potential for a completely undeserving player getting a starting spot and putting the league in a clumsy position. 

Teams and fanbases will still have the opportunity to arrange campaigns to get their players into the starting lineup, but it’s going to now not be as easy as mindlessly voting by retweeting a star’s tweet. 

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