MIAMI FL - DECEMBER 15: Antawn Jamison #4 of the Cleveland Cavaliers shoots a free throw during a game against the Miami Heat at American Airlines Arena on December 15 2010 in Miami Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that by downloading and/or using this Photograph User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
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The Cleveland Cavaliers knew they'd face an uphill battle back to respectability and prominence once LeBron James left them in free agency this summer, and the first NBA All-Star voting results, which the league released yesterday, reflect that fact. Despite having guard Mo Williams, forwards J.J. Hickson and Antawn Jamison, and center Anderson Varejao on the ballot, no Cavalier ranked in the top ten at his respective position in the earliest fan voting.
The fans, who select the starting five for the annual event via voting on the internet, in NBA arenas, and via text message, made James a starter each of his last five years in Cleveland. Without him in wine and gold, though, the fans have not taken much interest in the Cavaliers.
However, one must note that none of the four Cleveland players on the ballot really merits consideration as an All-Star. Williams leads the team in scoring at 14.4 per game, but is shooting 39.8 percent from the floor. Jamison hasn't shot much better, at 40.6 percent, and his per-game averages of 13.2 points and 5.6 rebounds rank among the worst of his otherwise distinguished professional career. Hickson, expected to take on a larger role in the offense due to James' departure, has disappointed, contributing 10.4 points and 5.1 rebounds. One can argue, then, that Varejao is the most deserving Cavalier: the veteran big man ranks first among rotation players in field-goal shooting (53.8 percent) while putting up 9 point, 9.6 rebounds, and one blocked shot per night. Sadly, he's listed on the same ballot with Dwight Howard of the Orlando Magic, who leads the entire Eastern Conference with 611,561 votes.
Keep an eye on this StoryStream for more All-Star voting results pertaining to the Cavaliers as they become available.