Five players who deserve to reclaim their All-Star status this season

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For one reason or another, many players are passed up for All-Star nods every season and though the voting system divides opinion, it's essentially a popularity contest and a way for the fans to see the players they want.

The fans make the NBA what it is and therefore the league should be commended for giving something back.

Over the last few seasons, though, numerous All-Star players of the past have been overlooked either by the fans' vote or by the coaches.

Here are five players who should reclaim their All-Star status this year:

Damian Lillard (Portland Trail Blazers)

This is a no brainer. The Portland guard was unlucky not to get a selection in Toronto last year due to his team's losing record and the number of quality guards in the Western Conference.

That snub motivated Lillard for the rest of the campaign as he guided the Blazers to the playoffs against all odds. He's currently averaging a career-high 28.2 points and looks like a shoe-in for the All-Star game in February.

Kevin Love (Cleveland Cavaliers)

The power forward is a three-time All-Star but hasn't featured since 2014 - his final year in Minnesota.

He has been overlooked during his time in Cleveland, either for a lack of form or health issues. But the big man is getting back to his best and is averaging 22.3 points and 10.7 rebounds a game and is on course for his fourth nod.

Dwight Howard (Atlanta Hawks)

Since moving to ATL, Howard finally looks happy and is playing with confidence again. Putting up 14.4 points and 12.6 rebounds, the center has become an important piece on the Hawks roster.

The 30-year-old is an eight-time All-Star but has also not taken part since 2014. Now that he's back in the Eastern Conference, he should expect a recall with the dearth of quality bigs.

Kyrie Irving (Cleveland Cavaliers)

Uncle Drew almost made last season's All-Star festivities as he was one of the leading vote-getters for much of the way before eventually missing out to home favourite Kyle Lowry.

The point guard was returning from a serious knee injury and getting back to his best, which is why he couldn't be selected last year. But after showing his quality in the playoffs and helping the Cavs win a maiden title, Kyrie has gone up several gears in the early parts of this campaign.

Posting 24.8 points a night, he will be an All-Star again, there's no doubt about that.

Blake Griffin (Los Angeles Clippers)

Players like Griffin are made for the All-Star game and he would've added to his five appearances were it not for injury.

Blake is now back to full health and playing some great basketball for the impressive Clippers, putting up 21.1 points a night. Barring another setback, the dunking big man will be on the flight to New Orleans to wow us with his athleticism once again.

Kyrie Irving
Cleveland Cavaliers
Central Division
Eastern Conference
Western Conference
L.A. Clippers
Pacific Division
Blake Griffin

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