OKLAHOMA CITY, October 23, 2011—There may not be an NBA season for the foreseeable future, but that’s not stopping the NBA players from playing. Kevin Durant is hosting a game for a charity to be named later in Oklahoma City.
The rosters are as follows:
Blue Team: Carmelo Anthony; Chris Paul; James Harden; Rudy Gay; Amar’e Stoudemire; Damien Wilkins; Michael Beasley; Jonny Flynn.
White Team: Kevin Durant; Russell Westbrook; LeBron James; Lamarcus Aldridge; Jeff Green; Jamal Crawford; Monta Ellis.
I think the White Team has the advantage with Durant and James. However, there are four quarters so anything can happen.
This is close to an All-Star game as Oklahoma City is probably ever going to see, and these rosters don’t look like they will disappoint.
As the players walk out onto the court to warm up the local guys get the loudest ovation. Kevin Durant, James Harden and Russell Westbrook from the Thunder get loud ovations. Of course, LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony do as well.
For the starting lineups James gets a good cheer mixed with boos. But maybe the loudest cheer next to the Thunder players is for Chris Paul who played his first two season in Oklahoma City for the Hornets when they were displaced because of Katrina.
Before the game started Durant addressed the crowd. He made it quick, but basically introduced the on court MC who is from DC like Durant. His name is Miles Rawles and he is the commissioner of the Goodman League.
Right away, it is noticible that Monta Ellis isn’t here and he is replaced by the latest Thunder draftee Reggie Jackson. No Stoudemire either.
Melo comes out firing hitting his first 2 shots.
This is very much like an All-Star game with no defense. Something to keep an eye on is Chris Paul playing with Anthony, since Melo has made no secret he wants CP in New York when there is actually a season.
The teams are basically trading dunks and threes, but Westbrook just threw down a monster dunk that got everybody going. Then Beasley dunked and no one cared.
Westbrook keeps dunking and everybody is loving it. 24-22 White Team. Westbrook leads with 10 points.
I know this is an exhibition, there hasn’t been any training camp, but these guys look really rusty. A lot of missed shots and dropped passes. They have been playing in a lot of pick-up games, though. Makes you wonder if the season starts how soon they would get back into shape.
Paul bounces it off the floor for an ally-oop to Harden. Best play of the game so far.
A foul is actually called. It probably was a foul, but we don’t even really need refs for this game.
Paul hits a three as the horn sounds for the end of the first quarter. Blue leads White 47-40. High scorer of the game so far is Anthony with 13 points.
In between the action are games and crowd participation. A lot of people are wearing their Thunder gear. It seems that people realize that this may be the ony NBA type basketball game they have all year so they are trying to make it as Thunder like as possible.
While Harden is shooting free throws, LeBron motions to a guy in the crowd to approach him. LeBron wispers something in his ear. Odd.
All of the jerseys say OKCASC on the front. I know what OKC means. I don’t know what ASC means.
Blue leads 65-63. Anthony and Beasley tie for high scorers with 20.
At the half is Blue 88 to White 82. Anthony still leads everybody with 23 points.
The second half is under way. A lot of people look at points but Paul has 15 assists in this game. He looks the sharpest to me. He has also score 12 points.
The announcer said Durant will play the whole game and so far he is right. He hasn’t sat down yet.
The jersey’s are being auctioned off for a charity that will be named later. At half time LeBron’s was up to $1200. Durant was at $750 and Damien Wilkins’ didn’t have a bid.
Either I haven’t been paying a lot of attention or this is wrong, but Michael Beasely has 48 points in the third quarter. Beasely has looked really rushty and even fallen down on occasion. I guess he is taking a lot of shots.
At the end of the third quarter Blue leads 129 to 126. One more quarter to go. In most All-Star games if it’s close at the end they start playing for real. There is only a 3 point difference so I would imagine this could come down to it.
Blue is starting to pull away with 8:30 left to play the score is 141-135. Beasley is calling for the ball every time. He already has 52 and wants more. Durant has 34 points and 22 rebounds. Paul has 20 assists.
Here comes Jamal Crawford! He hits two shots in a row to tie the game 143 up with 6:30 remaining.
Well now the White Team is leading 149-143.
The announcer just said it’s a career high of 54 points for Beasley. Career high for what? Charity exhibition games? 152-151 White.
One minute left. Harden hits a 3 to put his team within one.
Durant hits a three to put White up by 2. 23 seconds Blue ball. They could tie or go ahead here.
Melo ties it!
Overtime. Well, there is no NBA season, so why not have some extra basketball with overtime. 5 minute overtime.
LeBron puts the White team up by 2. 3 minutes left and Westbrook puts White up by 4.
Crawford hits a three to put White up by 5. Melo tries to answer but LeBron blocks his shot. 57 seconds left.
That’s going to do it. White will win it 176-171. Beasley has 56. Durant has 42.
Let’s hope the season starts soon.
Jason Black is a regular sports contributor on America’s Morning News and America’s Radio News. Coincidently, or not, he also does movie reviews for KJ103 and102.1 Kissin’ Country. You can also follow Jason on Twitter @jasonblack23.
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