Earlier this week, Mike hypothesized that, in a weak year for Eastern Conference guards, John Wall would have likely gotten serious consideration as an All-Star reserve had he been healthy the entire year and improved at all on his sophomore numbers.
Well, following the selection Thursday of Kyrie Irving and Jrue Holiday as reserves for the Eastern Conference All-Star team, the Washington Post's Michael Lee has made the same hypothesis.
Given that Irving and Holiday were the two young point guards chosen alongside Wall for the Team USA select squad last summer, both Mikes make a good point. It's hard to argue that a healthy Wall would have made the All-Star team over Irving, who's widely recognized as one of the NBA's rising stars, but he might have had a shot at being selected over Holiday, who perhaps has gotten less attention than he deserves while averaging 19 points and nine assists for the struggling Philadelphia 76ers.
Wall entered the NBA with many expecting him to be the star that Irving has already become, but those expectations have been scaled back by injury, team struggles and, at least in the minds of some league executives and media members, a lack of improvement in Wall's game.
To his credit, when asked about his exclusion from ESPN's recent "NBA 25 Under 25 Rankings," Wall seemed to understand why opinions of him have fallen, along with the best way to earn back the league's respect:
"I ain't see it but I heard," Wall said. "I was number 10 last year and now I'm not up there. I know I haven't been playing. So be it. Like I said before, you win, people love you. If not, they don't. I've been dealing with it since I've been here, people saying I haven't improved and what not."
"You get noticed by winning. That's all I want to do is come back and improve and I think I'm doing that and having a mature game after sitting out so long and know what's going on. My team is winning now, and that's all I care about."
Then Lee pointed out that it didn't seem to matter that both Irving's Cleveland Cavaliers (11-32) and Holiday's 76ers (17-25) have poor records.
"Maybe so," Wall said. "You never know. At first I was hyped then it goes away. There's a lot of good point guards in this league and I'm just trying to keep getting better to be up there with the best."
So what do you guys think? Do you still expect Wall to eventually claim a place among the league's elite point guards?