The All-Star Game is fast approaching where the best players in the world will be pinned against each other. For some players, it’s an annual occurrence to see their name on the All-Star Game roster. Among the best players in NBA history, 10 players have made at least 14 All-Star appearances, which also happens to be the top 10 among players.
There is only one player who remains active on this list and he is chasing greatness. Currently, LeBron James is tied for the second most appearances in this game. If he can play as an All-Star for two more years, he could be the first to reach 20 appearances. Of the other nine all-time greats, these are the 10 NBA All-Stars with the most appearances.
10. Jerry West – 14 All-Star selections
All-Star Selections: (1961-1974)
All-Star Game MVP Awards: 1972
Missed All-Star Games: 1969, 1974
All-Star Stats: 13.3 PPG, 3.9 RPG, 4.6 APG
Of his 14 selections, West was named MVP once. He came in 1972, where he was coached by his head coach Bill Sharman. West recorded 13 minutes and played 27 minutes. What stands out the most is that he managed to be the hometown hero, as the match was played at the Forum, and hit the final jump shot from 20ft to break a tie and win the game for the West. .
Among other years, West scored 20 points in the game twice. The 1971 All-Star Game saw him make nine assists, but his most effective game came in 1972, where he connected on 6 of 9 shots from the field. In the 12 games he played, he made 11 starts.
9. Dirk Nowitzki – 14 All-Star selections
All-Star selections: (2002-2012, 2014-2015, 2019)
All-Star Game MVP Awards: None
Missed All-Star Games: None
All-Star Stats: 8.7 PPG, 3.7 RPG, 1.1 APG, 0.7 SPG, 0.4 BPG
You need to give Nowitzki pause when it comes to his overall stats. Longevity is what matters here. That said, Nowitzki has only scored twice the All-Star Game five times. His best performance came in 2010 when he scored 22 points but was not awarded the All-Star Game MVP, which was awarded to Dwyane Wade.
Nowitzki was named the starter in two of the 14 games he played. In fact, Nowitzki was healthy enough to play in every All-Star Game he was selected for. That includes in 2019 when he was 40 and played for three minutes.
8. Karl Malone – 14 All-Star selections
All-Star selections: (1988-1998, 2000-2002)
All-Star Game MVP Awards: 1989, 1993
Missed All-Star Games: 1990, 2002
All-Star Stats: 12.1 PPG, 6.2 RPG, 1.6 APG, 1.0 SPG, 0.4 BPG
If there had been an All-Star Game in 1999, Malone would have made the All-Star Game 15 times in a row and every year in the 90s. The reason there was no All-Star Game was because of the lockout. When Malone won his first All-Star Game MVP, he did so on the biggest stage, because at the time, that was the biggest audience on record for an All-Star Game.
In 1993, Malone shared the honor with teammate John Stockton. The game was played in Salt Lake City Utah, home of the Utah Jazz. With the Western Conference winning the game in overtime, the officials still opted to reward Malone and Stockton in front of their home crowd.
7. Michael Jordan – 14 All-Star selections
All-Star selections: (1985-1993, 1996-1998, 2002-2003)
All-Star Game MVP Awards: 1988, 1996, 1998
Missed All-Star Games: 1986
All-Star Stats: 20.1 PPG, 4.7 RPG, 4.2 APG, 2.8 SPG, 0.5 BPG
It’s no surprise that Michael Jordan took this game seriously. When Jordan won his first MVP, he scored 40 points in the game on 17 of 23 shots. The following year, he scored 28 points but missed out on MVP. Jordan probably should have won MVP in 1993 had the Eastern Conference come out on top, but the team lost in overtime.
He wouldn’t earn another MVP until his full comeback in 1996. That year, Jordan scored 20 points on 8 of 11 shooting. In 1998, he scored 23 points and added eight assists. Out of 13 games played, Jordan was voted the starter in every game.
6. Shaquille O’Neal – 15 All-Star selections
All-Star selections: (1993-1998, 2000-2007, 2009)
All-Star Game MVP Awards: 2000, 2004, 2009
Missed All-Star Games: 1997, 2001, 2002
All-Star Stats: 16.8 PPG, 8.1 RPG, 1.4 APG, 1.1 SPG, 1.6 BPG
O’Neal recorded three double-doubles during his appearance in the All-Star Game. He narrowly missed it in three other games. He was also awarded three All-Star Game MVPs. The first came during his Triple Crown season, where he won Regular Season MVP, All-Star Game MVP, and Finals MVP in 2000. That year, he scored 22 points. and added 19 rebounds.
After a two-year hiatus from play, he returned in 2003 to score 19 points and 11 rebounds. He would win MVP the following year with 24 points and 11 rebounds. He would later share MVP in 2009 with Kobe Bryant, which was a brilliant sight as the two lifted the trophy together, potentially ending a long-running feud between the two players.
5. Kevin Garnett – 15 All-Star selections
All-Star selections: (1997-1998, 2000-2011, 2013)
All-Star Game MVP Awards: 2003
Missed All-Star Games: 2008
All-Star Stats: 11.2 PPG, 6.3 RPG, 2.8 APG, 1.1 SPG, 0.8 BPG
When Garnett won the All-Star Game MVP in 2003, that game itself was fun. The game ended in double overtime with the West leading 155-145. Garnett led the team with 37 points, nine rebounds and five steals, edging out the East’s Allen Iverson who had 35 points. It was also the first time the All-Star Game was broadcast on cable television. It was also the last time an All-Star Game was decided in overtime.
Apart from this big game, Garnett played 13 other games. Garnett recorded two double-doubles in other games. He made 12 stars out of 14 opportunities. He missed a game in 2008, which was ultimately the season he won a championship. Overall, Minnesota hasn’t seen an All-Star like this since leaving in 2007.
4. Tim Duncan – 15 All-Star selections
All-Star selections: (1998, 2000-2011, 2013, 2015)
All-Star Game MVP Awards: 2000
Missed All-Star Games: None
All-Star Stats: 9.3 PPG, 9.1 RPG, 2.1 APG, 0.9 SPG, 0.5 BPG
After winning his first NBA championship, Duncan caused a stir in California. Playing at the Oakland Arena, Duncan teamed up with Shaquille O’Neal to share MVP honors. That’s when O’Neal said, “You already have one of those rings, so I’m taking the trophy.” It was the only ASG MVP of Duncan’s career. It is also the most points (24) he has scored in 15 games.
Duncan recorded six double-doubles in the All-Star Game, which included a five-game streak from 2000 to 2004. The last seven appearances featured a point performance not exceeding six points, but at that time, Duncan had already established his Hall of Fame. Continue. The only year Duncan didn’t make the All-Star Game? It was 2014, the year he won his fifth and final championship.
3. Kobe Bryant – 18 All-Star selections
All-Star Selections: (1998, 2000-2016)
All-Star Game MVP Awards: 2002, 2007, 2009, 2011
Missed All-Star Games: 2010, 2014, 2015
All-Star Stats: 19.3 PPG, 5.0 RPG, 4.6 APG, 2.5 SPG, 0.4 BPG
Outside of Michael Jordan, there was perhaps only one player who took the All-Star Game as seriously as Kobe Bryant. With his four MVPs, he holds the most of any player on this list. He’s tied with Bob Pettit for the most in NBA history. After his death in 2020, the league renamed the award in his honor.
In 12 of 15 games played, Bryant scored in double figures. That included 31 points, five rebounds, and five assists in 2002. In 2007, Bryant scored 31 points on 13 of 24 shooting and added five rebounds, six assists, and six steals. In 2009, he scored 27 points, then crowned his last MVP in 2011 with a career-high 37 points and 10 rebounds.
2. LeBron James – 18 All-Star selections
All-Star Selections: (2005-2022)
All-Star Game MVP Awards: 2006, 2008, 2018
Missed All-Star Games: None
All-Star Stats: 22.3 PPG, 6.0 RPG, 5.8 APG, 1.1 SPG, 0.4 BPG
LeBron James was drafted with the No. 1 overall pick in 2003. The only season without an All-Star appearance was in 2004. After that, he had as many All-Star Game appearances as the Class of 2021 was alive. From the fans who voted him top voter to winning three All-Star Game MVPs, no one can deny that LeBron didn’t belong there.
If LeBron can make the All-Star Game next season, he’ll be tied for the most picks. With his selection this season, he tied an old rival and friend for second place. Assuming he can play in the league for two more seasons, he could be the first to record 20 All-Star game selections.
1. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar – 19 All-Star Selections
All-Star selections: (1970-1977, 1979-1989)
All-Star Game MVP Awards: None
Missed All-Star Games: 1973
All-Star Stats: 13.9 PPG, 8.3 RPG, 2.8 APG, 0.3 SPG, 1.7 BPG
Abdul-Jabbar currently reigns supreme with the most All-Star Game selections in NBA history, but that reign could soon come to an end. For now, we can marvel at what he accomplished in this game. In 18 games played, he scored 15 times in double digits. He scored at least 20 points five times and added double-digit rebound totals six times.
His career high in points came in 1984 when he scored 25 points. His best rebound outing came in 1980. That game was special because he finished with 17 points and he missed an assist (9) to hit a triple-double. He also finished with six blocks. In total, he made 13 starts, but what stands out the most is that he never received an ASG MVP trophy.