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ESPN predicts Utah Jazz players Gordon Hayward, Derrick Favors, Rudy Gobert will be All-Star snubs in 2016

Earliest All-star snub ever?

Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

ESPN calls themselves the worldwide leader in sports. Just as long as those sports take place in big markets. Anyway, Kevin Pelton, Ethan Strauss, and Amin Elhassan (Al-Hassan, stop saying your name like Casey Kasem) came out with an NBA Insider video and article today looking at first time NBA All-Stars for the 2016 NBA All-Star Game. Pelton went with Kawhi Leonard (Spurs), DeAndre Jordan (Clippers), Greg Monroe (Bucks), Andre Drummond (Pistons), Hassan Whiteside (Heat), Reggie Jackson (Pistons), Monta Ellis (Pacers), Mike Conley (Grizzlies), Bradley Beal (Wizards), and Kemba Walker (Hornets). The justification is mostly a) easier to get on the team in the East, and b) if you are an aspirant forward/center in the West, it's really impossible to get there. Also, it's important to note that Strauss and Elhassan point out that Kobe Bryant (Lakers) is probably going to make the team, further complicating how this works. He'll get so many votes, despite not being one of the best 12 players in the conference. Crazy.

As for our guys, well, Pelton had this to say:

Honorable Mention:

Derrick Favors / Rudy Gobert / Gordon Hayward | Utah Jazz

The Jazz have three players who might merit All-Star consideration next season if Utah's in the playoff mix. It's just hard to see any of them cracking the West roster. Hayward has been usurped on the wing by Leonard, and Favors and Gobert are behind Jordan in the post pecking order.

- Kevin Pelton, ESPN Insider, 2015

For the record the other honorable mention players were Giannis Antetokounmpo (Bucks), Goran Dragic (Heat), Draymond Green (Warriors), and Andrew Wiggins (Timberwolves). Fun stuff, huh? I hope Rudy hears about this, he seems to get better and better each time someone doubts him.