King of Turnovers

AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli

Oklahoma City had been flirting with disaster for awhile now. Close game against Portland, and then another against Golden State. Tonight, Oklahoma City burned themselves with 23 turnovers, turning into 25 extra Kings possessions and also 25 extra points for Sacramento.

However, it was the turnovers and the lack of defensive rebounding that did the Thunder in tonight. Sacramento had 17 offensive rebounds and only turned the ball over 12 times, compared to OKC’s 23 times. Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant combined for 11 turnovers. Oklahoma City only converted 12 points off the 12 turnovers.

Oklahoma City led by as much as eight points with 4:50 left in the fourth quarter at 95-87. The Kings closed on a 19-6 run to pull out the stunning upset. The Kings were led by Demarcus Cousins who had 19 points and 9 rebounds. Oklahoma City still had multiple chances down the stretch. They led 97-94 until Marcus Thornton hit a tying three-point shot. After hitting free throws, the Thunder had another chance, but Westbrook stepped on the sideline, turning the ball over.

In the end, Oklahoma City choked this game away. I don’t know whether or not it was the crowd, or what, but Oklahoma City drops to 20-6 on the season and 11-5 on the road. The Kings improved to 10-16 and 7-4 at home.

Post Game Grades

Rebound: F
Oklahoma City came into this game knowing they need to rebound. They did not. They lost the overall battle 46-40 and they allowed 17 offensive rebounds. This has the Washington game written all over it. If you give a team 25 extra chances, they’re going to find a way to score some points. Sacramento had 17 second chance points, compared to just 12 by Oklahoma City

Russell Westbrook: C
Yeah, some of you might be saying “What? Did you even watch the game???” I did. Seven turnovers, three assists, five fouls. Yeah, some fouls were towards the end, but it’s still five fouls. He had all five in the second half too. He had some flashy plays. (see video).
[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YaGaMb5LIag] However, he really needs to find a way to play under control. This was basically a game describing Westbrook’s entire season.

See the Kings: B
This wasn’t really all the Thunder’s fault. Credit the Kings. They had their NBA Finals tonight. They were playing their only national televised game and beat the NBA’s best team. That said, the Thunder played like crap and the Kings made shots when they had to, simple as that.

Some Afterthoughts

  • Serge Ibaka was more like Serge Get-that-ball-out-of-here-now-baka. He tied his career and franchise high with 10 blocks. Unfortunately he fouled out late in this game. Ibaka flirted with a triple-double. 6 points, 9 rebounds, 10 blocks.
  • Kevin Durant was KD. He had just 15 points going into the fourth quarter. He had 12 of the 23 fourth quarter points. He was close to the double-double. 27 points, 8 rebounds.
  • Russell Westbrook was very good despite his costly turnovers. That dunk from above was something else. Just kinda had to walk out of the room due to the dirtiness of the dunk. He really took over in the third quarter as well. He had 14 points in that quarter.
  • Where was James Harden in the second half? He led all scored at halftime with 14 points, but he had just three points in the second half, all from the line. Some say it’s because Westbrook doesn’t get him the ball, some say he doesn’t try so hard. However, he still finished with 17 points, 3 assists and 5 rebounds.
  • OKC shot 48%, Kings 40%… and they still lost this game.
  • Final 5:55 of the ball game. KD 1-5 from the floor with two turnovers. Westbrook three turnovers. Kings go on a 19-6 run. Yep.
  • Afterthoughts are short and sweet. Just remember, Oklahoma City is still up 5 1/2 games in the Division. 2 1/2 on the rest of the Western Conference.

Up Next: At Utah, tomorrow night.



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