Yesterday, the All Rookie Teams came out, and Clippers’ point guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander was a bit snubbed by his placement on the 2nd Team rather than the 1st Team. But still, not too bad. Today, another Clippers’ point guard was more grievously snubbed on the All-Defense Teams: Pat Beverley failed to make either roster.
The voting is identical to the Rookie Team ballots, where a vote for 1st Team grants two points, and a vote for 2nd Team awards one. Pat got an impressive 14 votes for the 1st Team, and 20 votes for the 2nd Team, but this only added up to 48 points. This trailed behind not only the All Defense recipients (Marcus Smart, Eric Bledsoe, Jrue Holiday, and Klay Thompson), but Danny Green as well, who also didn’t make a team. Basically, Pat came in 6th place on a 4 person ballot. Unfortunately, the All-Defense teams are also positional: Pat got more 1st place votes than three players on the 2nd Team, but because they were forwards or centers, they made it on with the 2nd Team votes.
Looking at the guards, it’s hard to really argue with Smart and Bledsoe, who were two monstrously good defenders on two of the best defensive teams in the NBA. But Pat placing behind Jrue and, especially, Klay, leaves a lot more to be desired. Jrue is an excellent defensive player, but he played 11 less games than Pat on a (much) worse team, and his defense slipped by some metrics as his offensive burden grew. More annoyingly, Klay got nearly twice as many votes despite being a less important defender to his team. Yes, Klay is a terrific defender in man to man coverage, but he’s the third best defensive player on his own team, and isolation defense is less important than ever. Advanced metrics also hate his defense, ranking him as one of the worst defenders on the Warriors (they’re wrong here, but it’s something to consider).
Pat was a true leader on defense for the Clippers, the quarterback who communicated everything to the guys behind him. He took on the toughest assignments every night, guarding players ranging from slippery point guards like JJ Barea to wings like Bradley Beal to players with nearly a foot or a hundred points on him in Kevin Durant or LeBron James. The Clippers’ defense itself wasn’t great, but neither was the Warriors’, and none of the Clippers’ weaknesses on that end were due to Pat, who played his heart out each and every night. He deserved this (at least over Klay; Green and Derrick White would have been worthy winners as well). Our own Farbod Esnaashari wrote about how Pat was worthy of the 1st Team nod this season, and his effectiveness and impact simply can’t be denied. It’s a shame.
Check out the full voting below, and spot another Clippers’ player on there: Shai, who received a single nod for the 2nd Team. Pretty cool for the rookie point guard, and a harbinger of many more All Defense votes in the years to come.
NBA announces All-Defensive teams: pic.twitter.com/BzLEVy3fcy— Howard Beck (@HowardBeck) May 22, 2019
Pat Beverley has enough chips on his shoulder to support a Lays factory for the better part of a year. This snub will be one more, and rest assured that Pat will come out with a vengeance on the defensive end next year. Offensive players beware!