Well, folks. It's official. John Wall is an All-Star.
In an interview with Monumental Network, Wall expressed his gratitude and excitement for his first-ever All-Star game, calling it a "dream come true" right off the bat. Later, he had this to say:
I think a lot of coaches and a lot of people understand and respect what I did in the past, how I came into the league, and how I'm developing as a player and a person. And I'm just trying to become a better leader and a better point guard for my team.
It just lets me know that all the sacrifices I put in to get back from my injuries is all paying off.
With the heavy weight of that max contract he signed in the offseason hanging over his head, Wall felt the pressure to make himself -- and his team -- better.
Wizards John Wall told Yahoo earlier this week that he felt making All-Star & the playoffs would publicly validate his five-year, $80m deal— Marc J. Spears (@SpearsNBAYahoo) January 30, 2014
On tonight's TNT broadcast where they announced all of the selections, notorious curmudgeon and #realtalk aficionado Charles Barkley had this to say about Wall's selection:
I want to congratulate John Wall, because John Wall has really turned into a very good player. He's turned his game around. And let me tell you something: him and Bradley Beal, they're going to be the best backcourt in the NBA in the next five years. I loooove Bradley Beal.
His B-W Parkway/Slash and Dash BFF!
And congratulations to all the other selections in the East: Roy Hibbert, Joakim Noah, DeMar DeRozan, Joe Johnson, Chris Bosh, and Paul Millsap.
After placing far behind others to become a starter for this year's All-Star game, coaches around the league chose John Wall to represent the Eastern Conference as a reserve in New Orleans in two weeks' time. I know Wall deserved it, you know he deserved it, but isn't it nice to know that others think he deserved it, too?