Harden, Thompson to start for West All-Stars

Steve Kerr will go with a three-guard lineup during All-Star 2015.

Western All-Star coach Steve Kerr will go with a three-guard lineup during All-Star 2015.

It turns out that Steve Kerr did not need the wisdom of Solomon to avoid splitting the baby.

The solution to his problem about what to do with a logjam in the West backcourt was a simple one: He’ll employ a three-guard lineup that puts the Rockets James Harden and Warriors Klay Thompson alongside Stephen Curry.

The “Splash Brothers” teamed up to score 39 points in the Warriors’ 94-91 win over the Timberwolves in Minnesota on Wednesday night just a short time before learning they’d be starting together in the 2015 NBA All-Star Game on Sunday.

As the leading vote-getter in the fan balloting, Curry was set to start, but a bit of debate and dilemma opened when the injured Kobe Bryant was scratched and speculation swirled if Kerr would give the starting nod to his own player Thompson and snub the NBA’s leading scorer in Harden.

But the announcement that the Clippers’ forward Blake Griffin underwent surgery for a staph infection in his elbow and would also miss the All-Star Game gave Kerr the wiggle room he needed.

Thompson and Curry will become the Warriors’ first duo of All-Star starters since 1967, when Rick Barry won the MVP at the Cow Palace and started alongside Nate Thurmond.

Rusty Simmons of the San Francisco Chronicle had the reaction to the decision:

“For our coaching staff to be handling the Western Conference and to be rewarding us for the wins we’ve had in the first part of the season, I think it’s only right that coach gets to pick his guy and reward Klay for what he’s done this season,” Curry said.

“It’s a cool honor for Klay to have with his head coach manning the team and having both of us in the backcourt.”

Kerr has known for weeks that he needed to name replacements, and he said he lied about not considering his options eight straight times before finally making the announcement after Wednesday’s game.

Joining the three guards in the West starting lineup will be center Marc Gasol of the Grizzlies and forward Anthony Davis of the Pelicans.

24 Comments

  1. Nick Simkalo says:

    We are talking about the All Star game, not the playoffs. The Warriors have the best record, and 2 of the top players in the league. Klay deserves to start, he’s top ten in scoring and one of, if not the best two way two guard in the league, and that’s what all the “experts” say. LaMarcus Alridge is a terrific player, but not deserving a star over Klay or James Harden, especially at the three position having to guard someone like LeBron. 42-9 deserves two all stars regardless of starting or coming off the bench. And let’s not even talk about why Kyle Korver is a starter or why Gasol is starting over Boogie.

  2. Rockets Fan says:

    The fact that Klay would even be considered for a starting all-star spot is exactly why Harden is the leader for MVP over Curry. Take Curry off the Warriors and they still have 35 wins…take Harden off the Rockets and they might have 20.

  3. jake s. says:

    I think I’m the only person that would rather see regular season basketball over an All Star Game. I guess if you are a fan of a losing team this is the only opportunity you get to see them win but still… I think maybe it’s a little too watered down by events like shooting stars, rising stars, and skills. I guess the league will keep the AsG thing going… Can’t wait to watch the West VS. Lebron James on sunday.

    • Stealth says:

      You are definitely not the only one haha. All star game is no longer fun to watch. Stars do not treat it seriously because obviously no one wants to get injured, but what will the significance of an All star game then? I think one of the leagues uses All Star Game to determine the home court advantage for west/east during final games… so that might help…

  4. OverseasNBAfan says:

    It’s very well deserved for both players they’re having amazing seasons, but its also deserving that the coach of best team in the west gets to choose his guy to start after other injuries, really just corrects what the fans got wrong..
    Klay is a big part of GSW historic first half of the season and breaking his crazy records, either him or Harden can easily play/switch SG/SF, I’d much rather see them starting SF than bigmen PF like Griffin or Davis who fans voted in.
    Still think if Kerr had to choose one or other he’d have been diplomatic made Klay 6th man.

  5. harriethehawk says:

    Coach Kerr can do whatever he wants; he earned it. His team is good, remember??

  6. Williams says:

    The fans vote for two guards, not three. The promotion to the front court should have been based on fan votes for front court players.

  7. NBA Lebanese Fan says:

    I don’t surprise. I know coach Steve Kerr will choose Klay Thompson as starter in All-star game.

    I don’t agree with coach. Thompson will play all-star game for the first time but other players have experiences for all-star game such as Russell Westbrook (4 selections all-star), Chris Paul (8 selections) , Damian Lillard (1 selection)
    Coach chooses Thompson???

    it’s my opinion.

  8. Aaron says:

    I don’t know why you cry Nepotism. Klay Thompson holds the record for most points in a quarter (37) and tied for the most three’s in a quarter (9). He did it this season. As a Lakers fan (a Warriors rival), I wouldn’t be surprised if the Dubs won it all this year. They are due (40 years since last NBA Title)

  9. anginoelle12 says:

    Past success should not predicate an all-star starter, but it should be noted that the Blazers made it just as far as the Warriors last year; second round. I predicted it would be Harden and Thompson. Aldridge should start for Davis hands down.

    Also, why do people keep bring up that Griffin, a forward, was replaced by a guard, Lillard … without acknowledging that Bryant, a guard, was replaced by a center, Cousins? I’ve seen those types of comments several times, but it seems like that situation evened itself out.

  10. mike jordan says:

    Aldridge can still start

  11. BasketballMachine says:

    Nepotism at its best! No surprise there.

  12. Sem says:

    Ridiculous! No favoritism there. Way to break all-star tradition to put your undeserving boy in the starting line-up.

  13. Byrd says:

    great move now the game is even faster with this line up…..we should see more one shooting to start the game off

  14. kevin says:

    no big surprise he went with thompson..nepetism runs deep in the nba…but lamarcus should have started IMO…but oh well gsw will not make it out of 1st round so ill get my good feeling in april

    • kevinisahater says:

      Lmfao no kevin

    • Xander says:

      Who the heck are you talking about? 42-9 isn’t proving anything to you? This is history in the making and just fun to watch. As a Warriors fan or just as a casual fan of the NBA. The Hawks are doing really well right now too! Do you think they’ll get knocked out in the first round?

      • Austin Menner says:

        The reason why it is a widely thought opinion that GSW won’t make it out of the first round is because history proves that a team that lives through the 3 point shot doesn’t win in a 7 game series. Plus they have very little help from their so called “big man” that plays center like he is in the WNBA as well as the fact that they will have to play a team like San Antonio or OKC most likely.

    • Cameron says:

      …last time I checked, Portland hadn’t been great in the playoffs. I agree with your comment regarding nepotism in the NBA and Lamarcus deserving a start…but how on Earth did you come to the conclusion that GSW wouldn’t make it past the first round. They have the best defensice and offensive ratings in the NBA. Regular season isn’t playoffs, but I think 1st round might be wishful thinking. Even if they play the Thunder, I think they’re a more complete team at both ends of the floor.

    • jake s. says:

      you sir are correct

    • Dan says:

      with the west being as tough as it is this year, it won’t be a cake walk for GSW to advance, but to say they won’t get past the 1st round… You’re being foolish. They have the best record and a well rounded team that moves the ball. #1 defense in the league and most efficient offense. What the hell are you talking about?

    • O says:

      You mad bro,
      Math lesson of the day, Kevin = Hater

  15. John says:

    i simply don’t think it is a fair solution

    • Jason says:

      I personally think that GSW will make it deeper than just the first round hand down. At leas the should. But never the less…west is so deep this season. what if the end up against Spurs or Maveriks in the starting round. I wouldn’t bet my money on GSW…respectfully…a great team. Trully a history in a making…but this year without a relevant bug man…second round tops IMO