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Kevin Durant was the only Western Conference starter not from one of Los Angeles’ two teams, but that didn’t stop the Oklahoma City Thunder phenom from making his presence felt at the 2012 All-Star Game in Orlando tonight.
In his third All-Star appearance, Durant scored 36 points and added seven rebounds and three assists to lead the West to a 152-149 victory over an Eastern Conference squad that was powered by Miami Heat tandem LeBron James (36 points) and Dwyane Wade who scored only the third triple-double in All-Star history (24 points, 10 rebounds, 10 assists).
Also making big contributions to the West was Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant (27 points), Durant’s OKC teammate Russell Westbrook (21 points) and Los Angeles Clippers forward Blake Griffin (22 points, eight rebounds). Durant’s efforts earned him his first career All-Star MVP Award. But don’t expect that honor or any other success he obtains to deter him from keeping humility a the forefront of his mind.
“In the Bible, (it says) the Lord exalts humility,” Durant told Inspiring Athletes prior to the 2010-11 season. “When people tell me I’m great, I (remind myself that I) can always be better. I always work on what I have now. I’ve just got to be thankful to the Lord for what the gifts He’s given me. My gift back to Him is to always be humble and to always try to work as hard as I can.”
Durant will be featured in a forthcoming book called Glory of the Games which releases on April 1st through Cross Training Publishers and includes commentary from several Olympic athletes such as Shannon Miller, Josh Davis, Tamika Catchings, Ryan Hall, Chris Byrd, Bobby Jones, Dave Johnson, Ruth Riley, Michael Chang and Jarome Iginla. Stay tuned to Inspiring Athletes for more details and check out the links below for previous Beliefnet posts about Durant and other NBA All-Stars.