Paul’s MVP leads West in All-Star Game
by Jeff Zillgitt, USA TODAY Sports
HOUSTON – The first three quarters went according to the perfected All-Star plan.
Give fans what they came for: electric Blake Griffin alley-oop slams, thunderous LeBron James’ fastbreak dunks, smooth Kevin Durant three-pointers and dazzling Chris Paul assists.
They came to see Carmelo Anthony’s scoring, Dwyane Wade’s efficiency and Joakim Noah’s effort. They appreciated the sustained excellence of Kobe Bryant, Kevin Garnett and Tim Duncan. They saw Kyrie Irving’s official admission into the club called “The World’s Best Basketball Players.”
Then, in the fourth quarter – with about eight minutes left – the game turned competitive, because at the end the day, players want to win. It doesn’t hurt that winners receive $50,000 compared to $25,000 for the losers.
Chris Paul had 20 points and 15 assists as the West extended its winning streak to three games with a 143-138 victory over East in Sunday’s All-Star Game. It was also the West’s fourth victory in five games.
Paul was named MVP for the first time in his career.
The East had few answers Kevin Durant and the West’s guards. Durant scored 30 points – the third consecutive All-Star Game that Durant scored at least 30 points.
Houston’s hometown favorite James Harden had 15 points and six rebounds
Bryant took a page from his recent regular-season play – the role of facilitator with nine points and eight assists. He also blocked James’ shot twice in the final 2:39 with the East trying to cut in the West’s lead.
Tony Parker had 13 points and five assists and Russell Westbrook scored 14 points.
Anthony had 26 points and 12 rebounds, and Wade had 21 points for the East.… [For more on Chris Paul's MVP show leads West in NBA All-Star Game, click here.]