The NBA All-Star reserves were named yesterday and some very deserving candidates will be headed to Toronto for the 2016 ASG.
Draymond Green and Klay Thompson joined Steph Curry as the Golden State contingent on the West's roster, while Chris Bosh and Jimmy Butler were among the many deserving stars to get called up for the Eastern Conference - with Bosh returning to Toronto after playing for the Raptors from 2003-2010.
There were some big names who didn't make the cut, however, with Dirk Nowitzki, Al Horford, Tim Duncan and Kyrie Irving not getting an invite. Another star who didn't make it - Damien Lillard - said he wasn't surprised by his omission.
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Speaking to a group of reports at a Trail Blazers season ticket holder function, the point guard revealed that he knew it would be a close decision.
"I wasn't really surprised by it," Lillard said, via Oregon Live. "You know, I knew that it would be a close decision I guess. I honestly wasn't surprised by it."
Lillard went on to add that he would be using the snub as a motivating factor, fuel to drive the Blazers into the playoffs come the end of the regular season.
"Like I said, I feel like I’ve played at an All-Star level maybe I need to prove me," he said. "I’m not sure. I’ll go out there and that wood on the fire will be more for my team. I think what I can do now is get this team into the playoffs. Put my energy into that. That’s kinda what I’ll be focusing on."
After losing four of their starters, Portland were expected to struggle badly and fall down the NBA standings. Instead, Lillard has been a driving force, keeping them in playoff reckoning with a real shot of making it out of the West.