When discussing the best basketball player of all time, All-Star Game MVP awards aren’t criteria in the debate. And they shouldn’t be. But it’s no surprise players who have accumulated the most All-Star Game MVP awards are among the greatest players of all time. An interesting subplot to tonight’s 58th annual All-Star Game in Phoenix is four players have a chance to join an exclusive club. A dozen NBA players twice have been named MVP of the All-Star Game. Only three have earned the honor three times. Four players have an opportunity to join that exclusive list tonight. The two players that will receive the most hype are Kobe Bryant and LeBron James. James still hasn’t won a regular-season MVP award, although many claim he’s the front-runner this season. James, though, has been named All-Star Game MVP two of the past three years. Bryant finally earned his first regular-season MVP award last season and is considered the No. 1 contender behind James for this year’s award. Bryant was the All-Star Game MVP in 2002 and 2007. Shaquille O’Neal and Allen Iverson also have been named All-Star Game MVP twice, but it would be shocking to see either land their third tonight. Shaq is enjoying a renaissance season and could receive a hometown boost since the game is in Phoenix. But it’s not as if Shaq has been playing for the Suns most of his career. Iverson is having the worst offensive season of his career. Most feel he wouldn’t even be in Phoenix if fans hadn’t voted him in. Bob Pettit, who played for the St. Louis Hawks decades ago, is the only player to earn All-Star Game MVP honors four times. Michael Jordan and Oscar Robertson are three-time All-Star Game MVPs. Being a two-time All-Star Game MVP is a short list. Wilt Chamberlain, Larry Bird, George Gervin and Bill Russell have one each. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, one of the all-time greats, has the most All-Star Game selections (19) but never won an All-Star Game MVP award. Kobe and LeBron already are in select company, but will one of them join an even shorter list tonight at US Airways Center?