Friday, April 19, 2024
spot_img

Donovan Mitchell joins list of players ineligible for All-NBA teams, awards as Cavaliers star misses 18th game

The NBA introduced a new player participation policy ahead of the 2023-24 season aimed at reducing load management and “reinforcing that we’re an 82-game league,” commissioner Adam Silver said. “If you’re a healthy player in this league, the expectation is that you’re going to play.”

Perhaps the most notable aspect of the new rules is that in order for players to be eligible for major awards, they have to appear in at least 65 games. For a game to count, a player must have registered at least 20 minutes. Said honors include:

  • MVP
  • Defensive Player of the Year
  • Most Improved Player
  • All-NBA team
  • All-Defensive team

With the All-Star Game behind us, here’s a look at which stars are either in the danger zone or already eliminated from contention for missing too many games. 

Looking for more NBA coverage? John Gonzalez, Bill Reiter, Ashley Nicole Moss and special guests dive deep into the league’s biggest storylines daily on the Beyond the Arc podcast.

Joel Embiid, Sixers: Ineligible

The reigning MVP will not be going back-to-back. Embiid was diagnosed with a torn meniscus in his left knee and underwent surgery in early February. No official timeline for his return has been announced, but no matter when he returns — if he does at all this season — he’s already been ruled ineligible for postseason awards. 

Kyrie IrvingMavericks: Ineligible

Irving has played well for the Mavericks, though with the elite young guards in the league nowadays he was always facing an uphill battle to make the All-NBA cut. In any case, he’s now ineligible. A fluke foot injury kept him out for nearly all of December and after a thumb problem, he’s now missed too many games. 

Bradley Beal, Suns: Ineligible

Beal’s first season in the desert has been stop-and-start due to various injuries. A back problem that began in training camp prevented him from making his debut until November, then almost immediately forced him back to the sideline for another three weeks. Upon his return from that issue, he sprained his ankle and was ruled out a further two weeks. All told, he’s already far surpassed the maximum number of games he could miss. 

LaMelo BallHornets: Ineligible

The youngest Ball brother was off to an incredible start this season before suffering yet another ankle injury in late November. He has since returned, but not before missing 20 games over nearly two months. As a result, he has missed too many games to be considered for any postseason honors. 

Ja MorantGrizzlies: Ineligible

Morant recently suffered a season-ending shoulder surgery, but he was ineligible for any awards before play even began. That, of course, was because the league suspended him for the first 25 games of the season due to multiple instances of brandishing a firearm on social media. Injuries and off-court matters kept him off ballots last season as well, so this will be two consecutive seasons without any honors for the 2022 Most Improved Player and All-NBA second teamer. 

Jimmy Butler, Heat: Ineligible

For someone who claims that he doesn’t start “playing for real” until after the All-Star break, Butler has made an All-NBA team five times, including three of the last four seasons. He won’t be making the cut this season, as he’s already missed too many games, due in large part to a calf and foot problems. 

Donovan Mitchell, Cavaliers: Ineligible

Mitchell looked like a good bet to make either the second or third All-NBA Team this season for a while before going down with a bone bruise in his left knee. Mitchell is missing his 18th game of the season on Monday against the Suns, making him ineligible for All-NBA selection. The Cavs guard Is averaging 28.0 points and 6.2 assists on 47.2% shooting (37.1% on 3-pointers) this season and helped Cleveland challenge for the East’s No. 2 seed. Mitchell has not played since Feb. 28.

Kristaps PorzingisCeltics: Missed 17/17 games

The Celtics are once again an elite defensive team, thanks in large part to the Latvian big man, who arrived in a blockbuster trade during the summer. It’s extremely unlikely that he’ll be in the mix for an All-Defensive honor, though, as he’s already missed the maximum number of games allowed. If he sits out one more, which is all but guaranteed, he’ll be ineligible. 

Tyrese HaliburtonPacers: Missed 13/17 games

The NBA’s assist leader this season has missed 13 games due largely to a hamstring strain he suffered on Jan. 8 against the Celtics. Ahead of his return to the lineup, also against the Celtics, he called the league’s 65-game rule “stupid.” The requirement could have major financial implications for Haliburton, as the value of the max extension he signed last summer will hinge on whether he makes an All-NBA team. 

CBS Sports will continue to update this story throughout the remainder of the season

Related articles

Share article

Latest articles

Newsletter

Subscribe to stay updated.