For the first time since the days of Allen Iverson, the Philadelphia 76ers have an All-Star for two straight years. After Andre Iguodala made the team for the first time in his career last season, the team traded him to Denver to acquire who they thought would be this year’s All-Star representative, Andrew Bynum.
Instead, it’s the more deserving Jrue Holiday, who has shined in Bynum’s absence. A first-round pick in the 2009 NBA Draft, Holiday is having the best year of his young career. He’s averaging career highs in points (19.0), assists (9.0), rebounds (4.2), and field goal percentage (45.4).
Holiday, who had been rumored to be on the outside looking out, was certainly deserving of the nomination. On a team who has been missing its best player the entire season and whose other role players have made limited contributions, Holiday has kept things together. His ability to score the ball in droves while still creating for his teammates is uncanny; he has developed into one of the top five point guards in the league. In fact, if it weren’t for poor shooting from his teammates, he might be averaging eleven or twelve assists per game.
He’s also improved his defense from last year, allowing less on the drive and thus being able to guard the perimeter with more consistency. He has become an all-around star and is by far and away the future of the Sixers franchise.