All-star events are supposed to be fun for players and fans and the NBA may have the best in the business. The 63rd NBA All-Star Game in New Orleans did not disappoint, as the East ended a three game losing streak to the West, 163-155.
It was a record-setting night for the NBA's mid-season exhibition. The East broke the record for most points scored in a game while the West tied the mark. The teams total points of 318 was another record in the high-scoring affair.
The East's Carmelo Anthony set the record for three pointers made, finishing 8-13 from behind the stripe in the game.
The Cleveland Cavaliers own Kyrie Irving set two records. He finished the game with 31 points and 14 assists with 24 of his points coming in the second half, a record. He also – at 21 – became the youngest player to win the All-Star Game MVP award, the first Cavs player to do it since his All-Star teammate LeBron James did in 2006.
Irving finished the game 14-17 from the floor. The point guard, who was elected to start the game by the fans, did not miss a shot inside the three point line and was 3-6 from long range.
The game followed the usual pattern of the annual event, beginning with high flying dunks and very little defense. As it wore on, the defense picked up, especially in the fourth quarter when the win was on the line.
Kevin Durant and Blake Griffin for the West led all scorers with 38 points a piece, which tied each player for third most points scored in an All-Star game. Griffin set the record for most made field goals with 19, 10 of which were dunks. Durant was a large part of the record-setting 56 three point attempts by the West, though Durant only hit six of his 17.
While the West was dominated by Durant and Griffin, the East spread out their scoring a bit more. To go along with Irving's 31, Anthony added 30, James added 22, and Paul George finished with 18.
Cleveland fans will be happy to see Irving taking home the MVP trophy, but will hope his play with the league's best will help when he returns to the Cavs.
The 21-year old will come back to a team that is 20-33 and is three games back of the Charlotte Bobcats, who currently hold the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. The good news is, the Cavaliers won four in a row before the All-Star break and looked good doing it.
If Cleveland can continue playing the free-flowing basketball they were before the break, they could make up some ground in the race for the playoffs.
Irving has proven that he belongs in the conversation with the league's best, but he would love to get his team into the upper echelon as well. The Cavs' first game will be Tuesday as they travel to take on the Philadelphia 76ers.
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- Cleveland Cavaliers List Kyrie Irving as Day-to-Day
- Kyrie Irving Looking for Another Big New in MSG
- Cleveland Cavaliers Get Back on Track Behind Big Night from Kyrie Irving
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