Is there a particular reason why Chris Kaman gets no love? You can argue that the Los Angeles Clippers big man is the most dominant center in the West right now, yet he rarely gets press and he damn sure gets no fan love. As of the latest All-Star voting results, Kaman was not even in the top 10 of centers in the West despite averaging 20.4 ppg, 9.3 rpg and 1.4 bpg for the season.
There could be several factors why Kaman’s game has been ignored for so long. For seven seasons, Kaman has been playing for L.A.’s JV squad that has only appeared in one playoff series (2005-06) during his tenure. He’s also not exactly the league’s most marketable player. But with his stats and the Clippers actually doing decent (considering they’ve been without Blake Griffin) this season, Kaman deserved to get some serious All-Star consideration. We weighed in on Kaman’s chances.
Why He’s In: Kaman is one of the most skilled big men in the league. He’s got an impressive post game – including the ability to hit ambidextrous hook shots. He’s aggressive down low and can finish. His 15-17 footers are dropping more and he can get it done on the defensive end. Kaman’s stats are on-par or better than any center out West including Andrew Bynum, Amar’e Stoudemire and Al Jefferson. With Blake Griffin out, Kaman really stepped up his game this season – he averaged 12 ppg and 7.9 rpg in an injury filled 2008-09. He also has been vital for the Clippers’ success. In his recent four game absence, L.A. lost every one of those contests. The Clippers are currently 18-22 in a tough Western Conference. If the Clippers can get closer to .500 in the next couple of weeks, then he’ll force the coaches to reward him.
Why He’s Not: With Amar’e a lock for the starting center slot, that means Kaman has to compete with Tim Duncan, Pau Gasol, Bynum, Nene and several other big men for a couple of open spots. Since the West is guard heavy and T-Mac might be voted in, the coaches might opt to select more guards and forwards. Although the Clippers aren’t terrible, they aren’t currently in the playoff race so that could hurt Kaman’s chances. Plus, the league is full of politics and we’re not sure how much clout Kaman has.
Final Verdict: I believe Kaman will be an All-Star. Even though Duncan and Gasol will make it, I think the coaches will vote in Kaman over Bynum and Nene. You can’t deny his numbers and what he brings to the table. Just because fans might not know about Chris’ game doesn’t mean the coaches don’t. After all, they see up close what Kaman does to their teams.
Does Chris Kaman make the All-Star team?