Pascal Siakam has been a bright spot on the successful start to the Toronto Raptors season, but has his efforts been enough to earn his first All-Star bid?
Micah Adams (@MicahAdams13): I've been beating the Pascal Siakam All-Star train for a month, there's no reason to stop marching to that beat now.
Yes, he should be an All-Star.
For a team that's struggled to find a consistent identity with core players missing time seemingly every game, it's Siakam that binds the Raptors together as he's played more games than anyone else on the roster this season. It's no secret that the East is thinner than it's been in several years with regards to the top talent. There's no reason why the 76ers should get three All-Stars over the Raptors given their relative place in the standings. If you're touting Joel Embiid, Jimmy Butler and Ben Simmons as Eastern Conference All-Stars, you should do the same for Kawhi Leonard, Kyle Lowry and Pascal Siakam.
Kyle Irving (@KyleIrv_): My initial reaction to this question was that yes, Pascal Siakam should be an All-Star. In my opinion, he's the leading candidate for Most Improved Player this season and he's played a key role in the Raptors' success to this point.
But after some secondary thought, I've changed my answer - Pascal Siakam should not be an All-Star.
This comes with an asterisk, though (and yes, I'm riding the fence here). This is assuming that the majority of people who have a say would put Kyle Lowry in over Siakam, which I wouldn't agree with either. Siakam has been more consistent over the course of the season and if you take the power of their names away, Siakam should be the one to get the nod.
Assuming Lowry will be an All-Star, I don't believe the Raptors should get a third All-Star before teams like Milwaukee, Boston and Indiana get a second - Philadelphia doesn't get the mention here because they'll likely get at least two All-Stars. Toronto has been great this season, no doubt, but the Bucks still hold the top spot in the conference and the Pacers and Celtics are still right there.
It's nothing against Siakam, it's moreso a numbers game with the amount of players each team gets in.
Carlan Gay (@TheCarlanGay): I knew coming into this season that Pascal Siakam had worked on his game and that this would be a breakout season for him, but to think he would be an All-Star was a stretch.
Halfway through the season as the guys above me know, I've changed my mind. Siakam has been one of the most consistent Raptors all season long and more importantly, he's there everyday. He's only missed one game all season long and has been asked to step up numerous times when either Kyle Lowry or Kawhi Leonard were out.
At the end of the day, though, this comes down to where the Raptors are in the standings a month from now when the team is picked. If they're way ahead of the pack, I think they deserve three guys on the team. If they aren't, maybe they only end up with two.
If the latter is the case, I think Siakam might even have a better argument than Lowry to make the team considering how many games the Raptors' point guard has missed. But these things are normally a popularity contest and Lowry has the bigger name so that may not happen, but it should.