Rod Strickland played in the NBA for 17 years and averaged double figures in 11 straight seasons from 1989-90 to 1999-00. In fact, he averaged at least 17.0 points, 8.0 assists, and 4.0 rebounds five seasons in a row from 1993-94 to 1997-98.
And yet, he was never an All-Star.
How is that possible?
“I don’t know,” Strickland said on CBS Sports Radio’s Gio and Jones. “I do believe I had some pretty good years where I possibly could have been an All-Star and it didn’t happen, so I don’t know. I kind of look at it like the numbers are in the books, it’s already there, and it is what it is. But I do believe there was a few years – if not a couple more – that I could have been an All-Star.”
Perhaps it’s because Strickland bounced around the league and played for nine different teams?
“I don’t know if that’s the case because I played the majority of my career – probably the better years – (with two teams),” Strickland said. “I played five years in Portland and five years in Washington. So I did have that 10-year period where I played with two teams. Now at the end of my career, I think my last five years I probably played with seven teams, so I take that out the equation. But I did have two solid periods with Portland and Washington.”
In 1997-98, Strickland averaged 17.8 points and had career-highs in assists (10.5) and rebounds (5.3) for Washington. He led the NBA in assists that year and was named All-NBA Second Team.
But still no All-Star nod.
Perhaps it was easy to overlook Strickland given the number of elite players at his position. After all, we’re talking about John Stockton, Gary Payton, Penny Hardaway, and Allen Iverson, among others.
“I don’t know,” Strickland said. “I think it becomes preference at times. You have the fan vote and then you have the coaches’ vote, so it becomes a little preference. So I just take it like that. But I think I’ve been blessed. I played 17 years. I would have loved to have been an All-Star. That would have been great, but it is what it is.”