When one thinks of the NBA All-Star game one tends to think about a game that doesn’t mean much with sloppy lob attempts and matador defense.
All of that is usually true but the All-Star game of 2012 was one of competitiveness, excitement, and heroics. Fans were treated to a thrilling game where Kevin Durant led the Western Conference to a 152-149 win. Durant captured his first All-Star game MVP by scoring 36 points and grabbing 7 rebounds in the win.
LeBron James was not be outdone scoring 36 of his own while dishing out 7 assists and collecting 6 rebounds. LeBron also had the game sealing turnover in the final seconds which soured an otherwise masterful performance. It wasn’t just the the turnover as much as the moment that LeBron had passed on. James had the ball with the East trailing by 2 and Kobe Bryant defending him in the closing 10 seconds.
Perfect theater or so it would seem.
Instead of taking the shot or attempting to drive, James threw the ball cross court into the awaiting hands of Blake Griffin. Immediately after the turnover Kobe barked at LeBron “Shoot it”. Bryant obviously felt robbed of the opportunity to have a showdown with LeBron with the game on the line.
Say what you want about Kobe but he doesn’t shy from the moment, he lives for it.
LeBron commented on the play following the game:
Yeah, he (Kobe) was telling me to shoot it. I seen my teammate open for a split-second…and I didn’t release the ball. When I tried to throw it late, that’s what usually happens and it results in a turnover. Definitely wish I could have that one back.
Kobe finished the game with 27 points and surpassed Michael Jordan for the most total points ever in All-Star game history. Bryant also finished the game with a fractured nose courtesy of a Dwyane Wade foul. Bryant complained of headaches after the game and skipped the media sessions to get a CT scan where the fracture was revealed. Nevertheless he is not likely to miss time.
Wade’s performance was also noteworthy as he messed around and got a triple double to the tune of 24 points, 10 assists, and 10 rebounds.
Many others played well including Kevin Love, Russel Westbrook, Griffin, Carmelo Anthony, and Deron Williams. However it was Durant who emerged as the brightest of all the all-stars.
Durant’s swag was on high from the first quarter even engaging LeBron in an impromptu in game dunk contest that shamed the real one on Saturday night. From there he showed just about every other offensive facet of his vast repertoire and ultimately deserved the MVP.
Well, man, its just exciting to be named an All-Star, but to step it up another level and become MVP. its only something as a kid you dream about. Coming form where I come from, I didn’t think I would be here. Everything has just been a blessing to me. I am excited.
Congratulations to Kevin Durant and the NBA for having such a terrific finale to a the weekend. This game was a life saver to the All-Star festivities after a horrific All-Star Saturday night.
About the Author
Written by Warren Shaw
I am an avid Basketball fan who has worked for the New York Knicks, Alonzo Mourning Charities and various other sports organizations. Having covered many NBA and various professional sporting events has given me the opportunity to provide insight with an unbiased but flavor driven view. I look forward to providing NBA content and interacting with knowledgeable fans and readers. Follow me on Twitter @shawsports or Email your questions to me at Warrenshaw@prosportsblogging.com