Hayes, Howard Headline All-Star Game Snubs
By Patrick Ralph
The 22 players selected to the 2018 WNBA All-Star Game in Minnesota next weekend were revealed on Tuesday night.
But with every All-Star Game selection, there are always going to be a few snubs. Two of the most notable snubs from this year’s game are Tiffany Hayes of the Atlanta Dream and Natasha Howard of the Seattle Storm.
Hayes, who made her first All-Star Game last season, is averaging a career-high 17.3 points per game this season. Hayes leads the Dream in both scoring and two-point field goal percentage (54.5 percent) this season. Hayes ranks in the top 10 in the league in both two-point field goal percentage and offensive rating this year.
Hayes is also averaging a career high in free-throw percentage this year (87 percent). She ranks in the top 10 in the league in free-throw percentage, free throws attempted, and free throws made. Due to her strong play, Atlanta is poised to return to the playoffs this year after missing out in 2017.
But maybe even a bigger snub was Howard, who has helped push Seattle from fringe playoff team to title contender this year as the Storm hold the best record in the league. Since leaving the Minnesota Lynx to join Seattle last offseason, Howard has had an immediate impact on the team.
Howard is averaging career highs this season in minutes (26.7 per game), three-point percentage (33.3 percent), rebounds (6.7 per game), blocks (1.8 per game), and points (13.5 per game). She leads the team in both blocks and field goal percentage (57.6 percent).
Howard ranks in the top five in the league in blocks and field goal percentage, as well as in the top 10 in rebounds. She is one of three players in the WNBA to rank in the top 10 in both offensive and defensive rating this season. Howard also ranks in the top 10 in offensive win shares, defensive win shares and overall win shares this year
While the All-Stars selected to the game are deserving of their honor, both Hayes and Howard sure have a case to be made for why they should be in Minneapolis next weekend.