Jan 12, 2012, 2:58 PM EST
You didn’t love Dwight Howard as much as Derrick Rose and LeBron James when it came time to award the MVP last year (I know you didn’t get to vote on that, neither did I, but sentiment on this site ran heavy to Rose among commenters).
But you love him now.
Howard, the Magic’s center, is the leading vote getter in the East and overall in the first All-Star ballot returns released by the NBA Thursday. The game is scheduled for Feb. 26 in Orlando. (And you wonder why Orlando isn’t going to seriously consider trades for Howard until after that game.)
James leads all forwards and is second in the East, followed closely for second overall by Rose.
By the way — if you are thinking of voting for JaVale McGee at center in the East, you should vote for Al Horford instead. And same with Jose Calderon, the Toronto guard who has outplayed Deron Williams so far this season. Just a suggestion.
Here are the first round of results (top 5 at each position). There are 19 days of voting left.
Forwards: Kevin Durant (Oklahoma City) 633,538; Blake Griffin (L.A. Clippers) 394,264; Dirk Nowitzki (Dallas) 231,832; Pau Gasol (L.A. Lakers) 185,428; Kevin Love (Minnesota) 143,814.
- Jimmy Butler even plans to play defense in the All-Star Game 6
- Damian Lillard “disappointed,” “disrespected” not to make All-Star team 41
- DeMarcus Cousins replaces Kobe Bryant in All-Star game 10
- Tyson Chandler, better than ever, thinking legacy 8
- Report: Magic close to firing Jacque Vaughn 14
- Three Things We Learned in NBA Thursday: The All-Star Rosters need to be expanded 29
- One day after having surgery, Kobe Bryant came to see Pau Gasol 7
- Report: Dwight Howard could miss “extended time” with knee injury 5