x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

MVP Kobe Bryant leads West to victory in All Star game

The Los Angeles Lakers guard, wins his record-tying fourth All Star game Most Valuable Player (MVP) award by leading the Western Conference to a 148-143 victory.

Kobe Bryant of the Los Angeles Lakers dunks during the NBA All Star game.
Kobe Bryant of the Los Angeles Lakers dunks during the NBA All Star game.

LOS ANGELES // Kobe Bryant, the Los Angeles Lakers guard, won his record-tying fourth All Star game Most Valuable Player (MVP) award by leading the Western Conference to a 148-143 victory in front of his hometown fans.

Bryant electrified a celebrity-filled Staples Center crowd with an array of slam dunks and led all players with 37 points and 14 rebounds.

"I wanted to come out and play hard and put on a good show," said Bryant, who joins Bob Pettit as the only player to win four All Star MVP trophies. "It feels great being at home here and playing in front of the home crowd."

LeBron James recorded a triple-double with 29 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists to lead the East, which pulled to within two points with 72 seconds left to set up an intense finish after a game filled with highlight-reel dunks and trickery.

Laker Pau Gasol scored 17 points and delighted his hometown fans with a put-back that gave the West a four-point lead with under a minute left.

Kevin Durant, the NBA's leading scorer, of the Oklahoma City Thunder poured in 34 points and sealed the victory for the West with a pair of free throw with five seconds to play.