Chris Paul, who played his first two seasons in Oklahoma City with the displaced New Orleans Hornets after Hurricane Katrina, had an impressive triple-double of 25 assists, 14 points and 13 rebounds for the Blue.
“I talk to KD pretty often,” Paul said. “He knows how I feel about Oklahoma City. It's always fun to come back here.”
Durant and Paul shook their heads when asked when the league's new collective bargaining agreement might be solved.
Will the NBA be up and running by Christmas?
“Um, I wish,” Durant said. “I really can't say right now.”
The Thunder's home arena across the street is newly named, freshly refurbished but empty on scheduled game nights.
“Hopefully, we can get something going across the street at the Chesapeake Arena soon,” Durant said.
Until a new CBA is in place, exhibition games will have to do.
“As you can see in these games we've been playing, we love to play the game,” Paul said. “We're going to find a way to play any way possible. We just want to keep giving our fans an opportunity to see us. If not for the fans, we're not who we are. We just want them to know we still want to keep working toward a deal.
“It's not just about us, it's about the fans. It's about the employees, all the people that make our game happen. So we want to play. Just make sure everyone understands that.”
When the 6-foot-9 Durant missed the potential game-winner at the end of regulation, he was being guarded by the 6-foot Paul.
“Oh, it's always a competition,” Paul said with a smile. “KD asked me why I was guarding him. (It's) because I'm not going to let him shoot it. I want to win. It's unbelievable. Guys don't get paid to play in these games. Guys came out here because of how much respect they have for KD and what he does for the community, the kids and giving back. It's all about what he's doing and guys want to come out and be a part of it.”
WHITE TEAM 176
BLUE TEAM 171
Percentages: FG .533, FT .813. 3-Point Goals: 14-41, .341 (Anthony 5-9, Harden 6-17, Wilkins 1-3, Paul 2-7, Beasley 0-2, Flynn 0-3). Blocked Shots: 0. Turnovers: 9 (Paul 4, Anthony 2, Flynn 2). Steals: 10 (Paul 3, Flynn 2, Harden 2, Beasley 2, Anthony 1).