One of the ultimate accomplishments for any NBA player is to get recognized by fans, coaches, and other players in the league. That often comes in getting voted to participate in the All-Star game, which is also an excellent chance for the best players in the world to prove themselves. Only 24 players get selected to the prestigious All-Star game every year, twelve from the eastern and twelve from the western conference. All-Star appearance is the equivalent of becoming a nominee for an Oscar in the world of the NBA. It is the highest stage in the NBA outside of the NBA Finals
Believe it or not, there’s even a few Hall of Famers who never got the nod.
10. Josh Smith
Playing his best years for the Atlanta Hawks, power forward, Josh Smith could do a little bit of everything in his prime. He could score, grab rebounds, block shots, disrupt passing lanes and, boy, could he ever dunk. The only thing Smith wasn’t able to do was receiving an All-Star selection.
9. Cedric Maxwell
The MVP of the 1981 NBA Finals, former Celtics small forward Cedric Maxwell, never made it to an NBA All-Star game. A tremendous two-way player, he was likely the victim of playing at a time in the Eastern Conference when the forward position was loaded. Maxwell relentlessly attacked the rim for the Celtics and Clippers on his way to a true shooting percentage of 62.9—an impressive feat for a 6’8″ player listed as a small forward.
8. Ron Harper
Typically speaking, when an NBA player scores better than 20 points per game, he’s a shoo-in to make the NBA All-Star game. Not for Ron Harper. Harper was one of the best scoring shooting guards in the NBA. As a member of the Cleveland Cavaliers and Los Angeles Clippers, Harper averaged 19.3 points, 5.2 rebounds and 4.9 assists over eight seasons.
7. Jamal Crawford
One of the best sixth men in NBA history, Jamal Crawford has been a victim of his skillset. The type of player who can get you a bucket at any time, Crawford just hasn’t received the national attention he deserves coming off the bench the majority of his career. He will likely never make an All-Star team, but two Sixth Man of the Year awards should prove to everyone that Jamal Crawford can ball.
6. Mike Bibby
In the early 2000s, there were very few point guards in the NBA better than Mike Bibby. Bibby nearly led the Sacramento Kings to an NBA Finals appearance in 2002, but his regular-season numbers just weren’t quite good enough to land him in an All-Star game. Because he was a part of one of the complete starting fives in the league at the time, Mike Bibby’s merits are often overlooked when he played for the Sacramento Kings.
5. Mike Conley
Mike Conley signed one of the richest contracts in NBA history, and he’s never been an All-Star. Utah Jazz point guard Mike Conley is a victim of playing in the Western Conference. He is a great player in his own right, but with Stephen Curry, Chris Paul, Russell Westbrook and Damian Lillard playing out west, Conley will likely never be named an All-Star.
4. Marcus Camby
From day one, Camby was a defensive juggernaut, leading the league in blocks per game in just his second season as a pro. Throughout 17 seasons, Camby would amass three more shot blocking titles, four All-Defensive team nods, and one Defensive Player of the Year award. Unfortunately for Camby, the defense is an often under-appreciated aspect of the game, particularly from the standpoint of fans who would instead vote for a flashy scorer than a stingy rim protector.
3. Monta Ellis
Similar to Mike Conley, Monta Ellis has been the victim of playing in a conference with so many great guards. An excellent scorer, Ellis was deserving of an All-Star selection in 2015 with the Mavs, as he averaged 20.2 points, 4.4 assists, and two steals per game. Unfortunately, he didn’t make the cut.
2. Toni Kukoc
Toni Kukoc was instrumental in the Chicago Bulls’ success, and he was one of the best players worldwide before setting foot on an NBA hardwood, winner of the Sixth Man of the Year, and 3 Larry O’Brien trophies with the Bulls. After Michael Jordan’s second retirement in 1998, Bulls forward Toni Kukoc was expected to blossom into an NBA star. It didn’t happen. Kukoc put up solid numbers and would have likely been an All-Star in 1999, but the game was canceled due to players’ strike.
1. Lamar Odom
An immensely talented player, forward Lamar Odom never could get enough momentum going to make an All-Star team. In his prime, Odom was one of the most dynamic points forwards in the game. He made an immediate impact as a rookie with averages of 16.6 points, 7.8 rebounds, and 4.2 assists, numbers only Magic Johnson and LeBron James have matched as 20-year-olds. Odom was an integral part of the 2009 and 2010 championship Lakers teams in Los Angeles but never quite got the respect he deserved throughout his NBA career.