Alex Hales hit his first Nottinghamshire century of the season before Paul Collingwood led a Durham run chase under the Trent Bridge floodlights.
Hales, who will soon head off to join England for the ICC Champions Trophy, blasted 104 at the top of the order as the Outlaws posted 297 all out.
However, Collingwood scored an unbeaten 73 not out as his side completed a four-wicket victory, with five balls remaining.
Durham’s chase had got off to the worst possible start when they lost captain Keaton Jennings to his first ball but a stand of 160 between Graham Clark and Cameron Steel revived hopes.
Clark made 92 from 94 balls and Steel accompanied him with 77 from 109 balls but when they fell it was left to Collingwood to guide their side over the line.
Earlier, Hales' century had been the backbone behind the Notts Outlaws’ innings, with Billy Root and Chris Read scoring half centuries.
During the Notts innings Mark Wood and James Weighell each picked up three wickets for the visitors but Hales was dropped on three separate occasions and made Durham pay by advancing to the 15th one-day hundred of his career.
Hales scored his runs from 103 balls, with eight fours and three huge sixes, one sailing straight through the open windows of the radio commentary boxes on the third floor of the Radcliffe Road Stand.
Rushworth had put the hosts on the back foot early on, by removing Michael Lumb in the first over and Riki Wessels in the fifth but Samit Patel, in his benefit match, played nicely before lifting to the point boundary for 28.
Hales, who passed 5,000 one-day runs during his innings, was eventually dismissed by Weighell, with Ryan Pringle taking a well-judged catch in the deep.
Root and Read combined with a well-paced sixth wicket stand of 101 in 11.5 overs, before both fell to consecutive deliveries from Paul Coughlin. Read made 61 from just 38 balls, with seven fours and two maximums, with Root falling on 66 from 86 balls, with six boundaries.
That heralded a collapse which saw Notts slide from 288 for five to 297 all out with Wood taking all of his wickets in the final over to finish with three for 62. Weighell, the competition’s leading wicket-taker, took his tally to 16 with three for 66.
Notts would have been desperately keen to dismiss Jennings early on but couldn’t have envisaged getting his wicket as early as they did.
The left-hander, with two centuries already in this year’s competition, clipped his first ball straight into the hands of Patel at point. Bowler Ball then struck again as Michael Richardson edged to slip to leave the chase in tatters at eight for two.
Clark and Steel both passed their previous best scores in a stand that spanned 32 overs, although Notts missed a couple of chances to end their stay.
Pattinson, playing his 50th one-day match, trapped Clark lbw and then caught Steel at the start of the next over, off Gurney.
Entering the final 10 overs Durham needed 93 runs from 60 balls but were powered to their target with Coughlin and Stuart Poynter both hitting sixes, before leaving it to Collingwood to hit Gurney for the winning boundary.
The victory lifts Durham up to second place in the north group, leap-frogging both Notts and Worcestershire.
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