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“I think his numbers are impressive enough to be considered,” Karl said. “But I like taking guys off the teams that win games.”

The star power out West isn’t helping their cause. Kobe Bryant, Chris Paul, Carmelo Anthony and Kevin Durant will start, with the center yet to be determined after the injured Yao Ming was voted in by the fans. That leaves players like Dirk Nowitzki, Deron Williams, Pau Gasol, Lamar Odom, Tony Parker, Manu Ginobili, Russell Westbrook, Steve Nash, Tim Duncan and LaMarcus Aldridge to vie for seven spots on the bench.

“The thing I’ll tell you, to be very frank, is that the coaches’ vote is always tipped heavily toward winning,” Carlisle said. “I’m no different than the rest of the coaches. I think that’s a major factor in the votes.”

That’s not good news for Love, Ellis, Randolph and Griffin.

It would be hard to imagine Griffin not getting voted in for a game played in his arena. The rookie is averaging 22.6 points and 12.8 rebounds and has made soaring dunks this season.

“He deserves to be on the All-Star team, I think,” said Clippers coach Vinny Del Negro, who cannot vote for a player on his own team. “He’s shouldered a ton of the load for us. Statistically, he’s off the charts, and he’s only going to get better.”

Love has been even better. He has six games with at least 20 points and 20 rebounds already. Dwight Howard led that category last year with three. He has three 30-20 games _ the first player to do that since Hakeem Olajuwon in 1990-91. And he had a 31-point, 31-rebound masterpiece against the Knicks in November, the first 30-30 game in the NBA in 28 years.

“The combination of a guy who can average almost five offensive rebounds and shoot 45 percent from 3, I don’t think that’s ever been seen in our league. Ever,” Orlando coach Stan Van Gundy said. “It just hasn’t happened. He’s a very, very unique guy.”

Unfortunately for Love, Van Gundy doesn’t have a vote for the Western Conference team. The Timberwolves sent out a promotional package to all the coaches in the West that includes a creative and funny pitch they hope will catch the coaches’ attention.

But Love seems to be doing a pretty good job of that on his own.

“People talk about the record of the team,” Houston coach Rick Adelman said. “What this kid (Griffin) has done, what Love has done, night after night, that’s pretty special. … I’ve looked at it. It’s going to be very interesting.”


AP Sports Writers Jaime Aron in Dallas, Chris Duncan in Houston and Antonio Gonzalez in Oakland, Calif., contributed to this report.