On Monday, the voting for the 2020 NBA All-Star game in Chicago concluded, and barring a collective effort from both the media and players, Alex Caruso won’t be playing in the big game on Sunday night despite an inspired rally by Lakers fans.
This was always going to be the case, but for some reason people have been treating Caruso’s fanfare as the beginning of the end for the NBA. In fact, during a national broadcast of the Lakers’ game against the Houston Rockets, Mark Jackson and Jeff Van Gundy criticized fans for trying to vote Caruso into the All-Star game, calling it “a crime” and “absurd.” Van Gundy went as far as to say the NBA should do away with fan voting altogether.
But sure, let’s continue engage in this hollow argument that the Caruso hype is the reason the league’s ratings are down this season.
What started off as good fun quickly (and unnecessarily) turned into a headache, even for Caruso, who told Kyle Goon of the OC Register that he’s relieved the All-Star chatter is over:
But owing to his status as a social media cult hero for the league’s most popular franchise, he’s gotten a boost among fan voting. And, yes, he gets a kick out of it.
“Obviously I enjoy it. I love fans, and the fact that I have fans is an amazing thing in general,” he said. “But yeah, kind of ready for it to move along, give the guys who deserve it their attention and getting back to regular games.”
It’s not that the noise around him making the All-Star game is actively affecting his life. Caruso actually told Goon that no one has trash-talked him on the court yet.
However, he does think it’s a bit silly that there was any ruckus in the first place, and he’s ready for it to all come an end:
“There are people who are very deserving who have had great years,” he said. “Fans do what fans do. Especially in the era of social media that we live in, once something catches fire, it just spreads. Like I said, I appreciate all the love. But the guys who deserve it, deserve it.”
The final voting returns will be revealed on Friday. If Caruso breaks a million votes and cracks into the top-three, it will all have been worth it