Kevin Durant has 19 points on a robust eight-for-12 shooting, putting him on pace for a possible second consecutive most valuable player award.
Dwight Howard finally scored, though they were pretty much freebies on a pair of uncontested dunks. Howard has four points.
Griffin has 12 points on an impressive array of dunks, making six of seven shots.
West 31, East 26 (end of first quarter)
Paul also came up with a steal and fed Lakers guard Kobe Bryant for a layup. The duo could have been teammates had NBA Commissioner David Stern never uttered the phrase "basketball reasons" in voiding a proposed Paul-to-the-Lakers trade.
Thunder forward Kevin Durant has seven points and Oklahoma City teammate Russell Westbrook six to lead the West. Westbrook took an alley-oop feed from former Thunder teammate James Harden, now with the Rockets, for a one-handed dunk late in the quarter.
Bryant is already the all-time leading All-Star game scorer with 271 points in 14 previous appearances.
Howard wants to merely make it through his seventh appearance without aggravating the torn labrum in his shoulder. He said he doesn’t fear worsening his injury because players don’t typically intentionally foul anyone in All-Star games.
Heck, they barely play defense at all.
Other story lines to watch include Boston’s Kevin Garnett and New York’s Carmelo Anthony as teammates only a month removed from a brouhaha in which Garnett infuriated Anthony by allegedly making salacious comments about his wife.
There’s also Miami’s LeBron James, who is coming off a recent stretch of dominance unparalleled in NBA history in which he scored at least 30 points and made more than 60% of his shots in six consecutive games.
And it’s always fun to see Lakers and Clipipers working together.
Oklahoma City’s Kevin Durant will try to win a second consecutive most valuable player award in the game after scoring 36 points last year in the West’s 152-149 victory.