Clippers center DeAndre Jordan ranked 12th among frontcourt players in the latest Western Conference All-Star voting results by fans, which meant … what, exactly? Not even Jordan seemed to know, because the frontcourt term encompassed centers, power forwards and small forwards.
"If I'm 12 in the frontcourt in the West," Jordan mused Sunday, "I wonder what I'd be in centers if we still had that."
For the record, Jordan ranked fourth among West centers with 58,200 votes, trailing Memphis' Marc Gasol (343,587), Sacramento's DeMarcus Cousins (165,456) and Houston's Dwight Howard (161,295).
But that ranking is essentially meaningless, because fans will select only the top three frontcourt players to start in the All-Star game Feb. 15 at Madison Square Garden in New York.
Jordan acknowledged not being a fan of the frontcourt designation that has been used by the NBA for its midseason showcase the last three years instead of forwards and centers.
"I just wish that when they called my name for the starting lineups," Jordan deadpanned, "they would say 'Starting at forward' instead of center."
Jordan leads the league in rebounding (13.6 per game) and field-goal percentage (.705) and ranks third in blocks (2.3 per game), but his candidacy is hurt by his relatively skimpy scoring output of 9.8 points per game.
Asked recently if Jordan's lack of scoring hurt his All-Star bid, Clippers Coach Doc Rivers said, "Listen, you guys are the voters, so I'm not going to get into it. I'll stop there."
Rivers lobbied his fellow coaches to make Jordan a first-time All-Star as a reserve last season and probably will do the same in the coming weeks.
Clippers forward Blake Griffin, who is second in voting for frontcourt players in the West, said Jordan's meager fan support is largely a function of a talent surplus.
"D.J. is a huge part of our team and should get more recognition for that," Griffin said, "but at the same time there are so many great players that do get voted [in]. I definitely want him to make the All-Star team, but at the same time his season isn't won or lost by an All-Star nod. None of ours, really."
Said Jordan: "At the end of the day, we're going to all be appreciated if we win a championship."
Remembering a friend
The death of ESPN "SportsCenter" anchor Stuart Scott on Sunday morning from cancer hit Clippers point guard Chris Paul particularly hard.
Scott, 49, had attended high school in Paul's hometown of Winston-Salem, N.C., and once handled the broadcast of a high school basketball tournament involving Paul's team. Paul also shot his first ESPN commercial alongside Scott.
"It's a blow to all of us," Paul said. "A lot of us grew up watching Stu and he just transcended everything. … He made it fun to watch 'SportsCenter.' "
Rivers said he appreciated Scott for more than catchphrases such as "Boo-yah!" and "As cool as the other side of the pillow."
"I love people who celebrate the game instead of trying to dissect and tear it down," Rivers said. "He's a celebrator of sports and he'll be missed."
Where: Staples Center.
On the air: TV: Prime Ticket; Radio: 980, 1330.
Records: Hawks 25-8; Clippers 23-11.
Record vs. Hawks: 0-1.