Daequan Cook finally came out of his shooting slump. He was 4-32 from three-point range his previous five games, but tonight he finally found his stroke. He finished 3-8 from three-point range and tied his season high of 17 points. Oklahoma City held off a late run by the Celtics to win 119-104. It was the 11th straight home win by the Thunder. OKC improved to 26-7 overall and a league best 14-1 at home.
The Celtics came out smokin’ hot though, jumped on Oklahoma City 22-12 midway through the first quarter. Then the Thunder turned it on. They ended the first quarter on a 23-3 run to have a 10 point lead at the end of the first quarter.
The run continued into the second quarter where Oklahoma City would cap off a thrilling first half by outscoring the Celtics 37-24 in the second quarter. Oklahoma City was 8-12 from three-point range in the first half as the Thunder had a 72-49 lead.
The Thunder pushed the lead to 27 points in the third quarter. Daequan Cook’s 3-pointer from the left corner with 7:07 left in the third quarter gave Oklahoma City the 83-56 lead.
The Celtics cut the deficit in half with a 16-4 run to finish the third, with much of the damage coming after Durant picked up his fourth foul and went to the bench with just under 3 minutes remaining.
The Celtics would fight hard and eventually cut it to 108-102 with 3:31 left in the game. Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook wouldn’t let the score get any closer. OKC closed the game on a 11-2 run and squashed any chance of a victory for Boston.
Post Game Grades
Run it: A
Oklahoma City had 27 fast break points. They had 20 at halftime. Had they really ran the court in the second half, we could’ve been really looking at a blow out of epic proportions. Give Boston a lot of credit. They never quit. This is attributed to their gusto tonight as well.
Oklahoma City out rebounded the Celtics 43-32 overall tonight. They allowed just three offensive rebounds all night, one in the second half. What’s even crazier about the rebounding difference is that Kevin Garnett had 13 of the 32 Boston rebounds.
Boston shot 48% and got to the line 34 times. Oklahoma City’s defense was very average tonight. Given their potent offense, it’s easy to ignore their defense. However, the second have was indicative of Oklahoma City’s defense and the lack of pressure without Thabo in the line up.
- Russell Westbrook is the first player in 30 games to score 30 or more points. Westbrook finished with 31 points. Last person to score 30 or more on Boston was Carmelo Anthony on Christmas Day.
- Kevin Durant finished with 28 points. A struggling 28 points, but that’s the thing about KD. He may struggle to get 28 points when a lot of players struggle to get 20 points. That’s how good he is.
- What was up with the turnovers in the second half?? Oklahoma City had just two at halftime, they finished with 12 in the second half.
- The Thunder’s 72 points at halftime was the league’s highest halftime this season. It beat Oklahoma City’s previous high halftime score of 70 points that OKC scored against the Knicks on Jan. 14.
- It was Kendrick Perkins’ 11th technical of the season. Two more would earn him a one-game suspension. Durant also picked up his first technical foul of the season in the second quarter after getting blocked by Garnett.
- Royal Ivey was “Ivey League” tonight. He was 2-3 from three-point range for six total points in the game. He also finished with a +5 in 13 game minutes.
- Oklahoma City had 22 assists on 42 baskets. It’s getting better, I guess.
- James Harden played awesome in the first half, was a bit of a ghost in the second half, but still played well. He finished with 17 points and a game best +23.
- Nick Collison missed his second straight game with a quad contusion. Collison hasn’t played a full season since coming to Oklahoma City.
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