ORLANDO, FL - FEBRUARY 26: Dwight Howard #12 of the Orlando Magic and the Eastern Conference fights for the opening tip-off against Andrew Bynum #17 of the Los Angeles Lakers and the Western Conference during the 2012 NBA All-Star Game at the Amway Center on February 26, 2012 in Orlando, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

NBA All-Star Game: West Wins 152-149, Durant MVP

Now after a couple of days, the stretch run of the season begins.

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West Beats East In NBA All-Star Game 152-149, Kobe Bryant Sets Record

The Western All-Stars dominated early, but a furious rally by the East and some missed free throws late in the game allowed the game to be decided on the final play. In the end, Dwyane Wade missed at the buzzer and the West came away with a 152-149 record-breaking win.

The combined 301 points was an All-Star Game record and Kobe Bryant set an all-time scoring record for a career in the ASG.

The MVP went to Kevin Durant, who led the West and was tied with LeBron James for the overall scoring lead in the game with 36 points.

For the West, Bryant scored 27, Blake Griffin had 22 points and Russell Westbrook had 21.

For the East, LeBron James had 36 points (but also two turnovers at the end of the game that kept the West on top), Wade had 20, as did Deron Williams and Carmelo Anthony had 19.

Phoenix Sun Steve Nash played only five minutes, did not score, but had four assists.


NBA All-Star Game Half Time Score: West Drops 88 On East, Durant Dominates

One thing you are guaranteed to see in the NBA All-Star game is great defense. Kidding of course, there's no defense played until maybe the fourth quarter. The 2012 version in Orlando is no different as stars like LeBron James and Blake Griffin reminded the fans how good the dunk content could be (if they were willing to enter).

Kobe Bryant needed just 19 points coming into this game to take over the lead for the scoring title for All-Star games. Kobe clearly was aware of this as he went into Kobe mode and dropped a quick 11 points before Chris Paul stopped passing him the ball.

Steve Nash, with nothing left to prove and an aging body to worry about, was the last guy off the bench for the West. He played just 4:18 minutes in the first half but dropped a sweet half court bounce pass on the break soon after taking the floor. He had four assists.

The West dropped a record-high 88 points in the first half while the East put up a measly 69. Kevin Durant leads all scorers with 21 points and his OKC Thunder teammate Russell Westbrook has 17. For the East, Dwyane Wade has 14 and LeBron James has 13.


NBA Dunk Contest Results: Chase Budinger Comes Up Short, Jeremy Evans Wins Competition

Arizona Wildcats alum Chase Budinger took part in the annual Slam Dunk Contest in Orlando on Saturday. The event, which is part of the NBA All-Star Weekend festivities, capped off a packed night of skills exhibitions. Budinger went up against Derrick Williams, Jeremy Evans and Paul George in the contest.

Budinger got things started right away by dunking over P. Diddy for his opening attempt. The Diddy Dunk looked like the first-round jam to beat, but it was quickly bested by George dunking over two people and Williams dunking over a motorcycle. In the second round, Budinger went for a nice windmill jam, but it was immediately topped by Evans dunking two thrown balls at once. George then opted for a light-out (literally), glow-in-the-dark, blacklight-assisted dunk. Williams followed up with a less-flashy but still impressive dunk, by performing a 360 dunk off a ball that teammate Ricky Rubio bounced off the side of the backboard. Budinger's third dunk was a blindfolded reverse jam.

For the first time, the winner of the Dunk Contest was decided by Twitter vote and text message. Over 3 million votes were cast and the winner of the contest was Evans, with over 29% of the vote.

The first skills event of the evening was the annual Haier Shooting Stars competition. The event, which featured four teams each comprised of a current NBA player, a current WNBA player and an NBA legend, required the teammates to alternate different shots from different spots on the court, ending with a half-court shot in each round. The team with the best time wins. Team New York emerged victorious as Landry Fields of the New York Knicks and his teammates, Cappie Poindexter and Allan Houston, managed the best time of 37.3 seconds.

In the Taco Bell Skills Challenge, an obstacle course consisting of dribbling, passing and shooting, Tony Parker of the San Antonio Spurs took home the trophy by topping Rajon Rondo's time in a playoff.

In the Foot Locker 3-Point Contest, Kevin Love and Kevin Durant had a finals tiebreaker which ended with Love taking home the prize by a final score of 17-14.

For more on All-Star weekend, stay tuned to this StoryStream or head over to SB Nation's dedicated NBA hub. For more on the Suns, head over to Bright Side of the Sun.

For all the latest AZ sports news, follow us on Twitter @SBNArizona and "Like" us on Facebook.


Kevin Love Wins 3-Point Shootout In Tiebreak Round

On Saturday night, after Tony Parker won the Skills Challenge, big man Kevin Love from the Minnesota Timberwolves won the 3-point Shooting Contest. He netted 17 points in the 60-second tie-break round in the finals. He and Kevin Durant tied the final round before the tiebreak, eliminating the defending champion and former Phoenix Sun James Jones.

Jones had the highest score in the first round, moving on the final round with Love and Durant, but he had a cold streak in the final round.

Love is adding to his fantastic year. Charles Barkley called him the best power forward on the planet, as he is fourth in the NBA in scoring and second in rebounding.

The tiebreak round was an interesting pairing, as both Durant and Love are forwards, and shooting guards are typically the guys that have more success.

Stay tuned for more All-Star Weekend coverage.

For the latest AZ sports, follow us on Twitter @SBNArizona and "Like" us on Facebook.


NBA Dunk Contest And 3-Pt Contest: TV Schedule And More

The eve of the NBA All-Star Game has arrived, which means the dunk contest, the three-point contest and an array of other competitions. If you are looking for who is in each of the competitions and when they will be airing, here is the info you need.

Coverage begins on TNT at 6:30 p.m. Arizona. Here is the order of events:

Haier Shooting Stars: The annual shooting competition features a three-member team of one current NBA player, one former NBA star, and a WNBA player. Los Angeles doesn't have a team, but host Team Orlando includes Jameer Nelson, Dennis Scott, and Marie Ferdinand-Harris.

Taco Bell Skills Challenge: Stephen Curry last year won the event, which is geared toward point guards, but a right foot injury will keep him out of this year's proceedings. Kyrie Irving,Tony Parker, John Wall, Russell Westbrook, and Deron Williams are all scheduled to complete.

Foot Locker Three-Point Contest: Former UCLA Bruin Kevin Love will compete in this event, competing against defending champion James Jones as well as Ryan Anderson,Anthony Morrow, Mario Chalmers, and Kevin Durant.

Sprite Slam Dunk Contest: Griffin will not defend his title in a rather uninspiring field of four dunkers, former Arizona Wildcats Chase Budinger and Derrick Williams., Paul George, and Jeremy Evans.


NBA Rookie-Sophomore Game: Markieff Morris Playing Well, Derrick Williams Struggles

The NBA is looking to make their All-Star weekend into quite the event and created the BVAA Rising Stars Game to add yet another dimension to the week. It is basically the annual Rookie-Sophomore Game, except Charles Barkley and Shaquille O'Neal were able to draft the teams. Phoenix Suns rookie Markieff Morris was selected by Team Shaq, while Derrick Williams was picked by Team Chuck.

Late in the second half, Morris has played well and has 12 points and three rebounds. As for Williams, the former star with the Arizona Wildcats has disappeared for most of the game -- much like he has for most of the regular season thus far -- and has just two points. Maybe he's just saving his energy for the Dunk Contest on Saturday night?

There is just about three minutes remaining in the game and Team Chuck has held a 15 point lead for most of the evening. Kyrie Irving leads all scorers with 31 points. Jeremy Lin has two points, one assist and one rebound in only nine minutes of play.


NBA Rookie-Sophomore Game 2012: Time, TV Schedule And More

The BBVA Rising Stars Challenge, also known as the Rookie/Sophomore Challenge is one of the most exciting parts of NBA All-Star weekend, and will have a great cast of characters taking part, led by Shaquille O'Neal and Charles Barkley.

The NBA changed up the format for this game this year by having TNT analysts O'Neal and Barkley select the teams in a live draft from a previously sleceted pool of talent.

Blake Griffin, the reigning Slam Dunk champion and Rookie of the Year, was first pick on Team Shaq as the only All-Star to participate in this year's contest. Team Shaq also features the Suns' Markieff Morris, rookie point guard Ricky Rubio, and second-year sparkplug Jeremy Lin, as well as Kemba Walker, Tristan Thompson, Greg Monroe, Landry Fields, Norris Cole, and Brandon Knight.

Team Chuck includes the likes of John Wall and Kyrie Irving, Kawhi Loenard, Derrick Favors, Evan Turner, DeMarcus Cousins, MarShon Brooks, Paul George, and Gordon Heyward.

Game time is set for 7:00 p.m. MT with coverage on the TNT network.

For more on All-Star weekend, head over to SB Nation's dedicated NBA hub.


2012 NBA All-Star Celebrity Game Time, TV Schedule And More

The 2012 NBA All-Star Celebrity Game gives us the fans a chance to see what some of our favorite celebs can do out on the hardwood, and will have some great coaches this year to do so.

Orlando Magic Center Dwight Howard and Oklahoma City Thunder Forward Kevin Durant will serve as the East and West team coaches, respectively which will include a litany of celbrities including Grammy ® Award-winner Ne-Yo (R&B/pop); 2012 Grammy® nominee J. Cole (Rapper), Common (Just Wright); JB Smoove ("Curb Your Enthusiasm"); Vinny Guadagnino ("Jersey Shore"); Kevin Hart (Laugh At My Pain); Javier Colon ("The Voice"); Drew and Jonathan Scott ("Property Brothers"); Jesse Williams ("Grey's Anatomy"); NBA Legends Mitch Richmond (six-time NBA All-Star), Penny Hardaway (four-time NBA All-Star), and Nick Anderson (NBA legend); 2011 WNBA MVP Tamika Catchings (WNBA, Indiana Fever); and Doug Gottlieb (ESPN, "The Doug Gottlieb Show").

Coverage can be found for the game at 5 p.m. MT on the ESPN Network.

For more on All-Star weekend, check out SB Nation's dedicated NBA hub.

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