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East thumps West in All-Star blowout

Date Posted: 2009-01-29

It wasn’t quite a rout, but the Eastern Conference held the lead from start to finish in the annual Japan Basketball League All-Star spectacular in Beppu, Oita Prefecture.

Up by 32 points with only a minute left in the game, the West rallied but still fell 117-96 in the Sunday afternoon contest. Only 12 fouls were called in the contest, well short of the average JBL.

Bobby St. Preux of the Sendai 89ers picked up Most Valuable Player honors with his 20 points scored, four assists and nine rebounds. Rizing Fukuoka’s Michael Parker, who tallied 29 points for the Western Conference, was named the game’s Most Important Player, an award given a player from the losing squad.

Ryukyu Golden King Naoto Takushi was close behind Parker, tallying 15 points, seven assists and a game-high three steals, while teammate Jeff Newton was close behind with 13. Kings coach Dai Oketani, who joined the Okinawa squad during the off season after heading the Oita HeatDevils and Sunday coached the Western Conference, called the event “a day of mixed emotions. Before we played, I was nervous. During the game I relaxed and it was exciting.”

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