Instant Replay: West takes All-Star Game

Instant Replay: West takes All-Star Game
February 17, 2013, 10:30 pm
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Kevin Durant, Chris Paul and James Harden and the Western Conference All-Stars sent Houston fans -- at least most of them -- home happy on Sunday night.

Paul, the game's MVP, led the West to a 143-138 win over the East in the NBA All-Star game in front of a sold-out crowd at the Toyota Center.

The game was close with just over three minutes when Chris Paul scored five points for the West. He hit a big three to give his squad a 132-126 lead and they didn’t look back.

HARDEN WATCH

James Harden played despite an ankle injury. Harden was unsure, even as late as Saturday, as to whether or not he’d play. But he tested it Saturday and before the game and felt good enough to play.

He actually played more than most thought and finished with 15 points.

Harden came in midway through the first quarter. He scored his first two points with 10 minutes left in the second quarter. Harden made a nice Euro-step move and finished with a layup a few minutes later.

Harden checked back into the game with about three minutes in the third quarter and quickly hit a three-pointer.
 
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Durant led all scorers with 30 points. Carmelo Anthony led the East with 26 points. Chris Paul was his normal self, dishing out 15 assists, while scoring 20 points.  

FIRST HALF HIGHLIGHT REEL

Yeah, there were a lot.

LeBron threw down a slam off a Dwyane Wade pass off the backboard in the first quarter. It was in reaction to a sweet fake behind-the-back move from Chris Paul, who dropped the ball off to Kobe Bryant for a layup. A few minutes later Anthony left up a alley-oop pass for LeBron, who threw it down pretty emphatically.

Kevin Durant found himself all alone halfway through the first quarter and didn’t disappoint. He pumped and slammed home a reverse dunk.

Harden tossed up a alley-oop pass to Russell Westbrook, who slammed it home.

Jrue Holiday was found on a slick backdoor pass and the Sixers’ point guard showed his ups, extending his left arm, rearing back and dunking. That slam brought the Eastern Conference bench to its feet about halfway through the second quarter.

Blake Griffin and Chris Paul did what Lob City does. Paul crept right and left the ball for Griffin, who slammed it down hard. A few minutes later, Griffin threw down another strong-two handed dunk, this time on an alley-oop from Kobe Bryant.

Late in the first half, Wade, from the corner, threw up an alley-oop to Tyson Chandler, who reared back and dunked hard with the right hand.

SECOND HALF HIGHLIGHT REEL

Dwight Howard made a three. That doesn’t happen often.

With about half of the third quarter gone, LeBron found a streaking Chris Bosh for an alley-oop.

The inflatable mascots came out and did a performance during the third quarter. They really ought to just make the real mascots inflatable. They’re awesome.

Durant took a pass from Chris Paul at the top of the key and slammed it home hard with just under seven minutes left in the game.

PERFORMANCES

Ne-Yo performed several songs before and one directly after the player introductions. There was smoke and there were pyrotechnics. Not bad.

John Legend performed the National Anthem without music and did it justice while standing at half court.

Legend’s performance was probably the best of the night. Alicia Keys was OK at halftime. Her voice sounded a little rougher than normal but is was still a decent show. Most of the All-Stars came out of the locker room early to watch the show.

UP NEXT

That’s it for the action from Houston this All-Star Weekend. Next year the All-Star Game is in New Orleans and in 2015 it looks like it’ll be in New York. NBA Commissioner David Stern revealed that the Barclays Center in Brooklyn and Madison Square Garden are the two bids in for that game.

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