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Thunder find some Magic of their own

 

Well, Oklahoma City sure did make things interesting. Trailing for much of the game, Oklahoma City used a 35-21 fourth quarter explosion to come from behind and beat the Orlando Magic 105-102. The Thunder trailed by as much as 13 early in the fourth quarter, including an 11 point deficit with seven minutes to go.

That’s when the league’s second highest scorer, Kevin Durant, turned it up a notch.

“I was so down on myself. I was really going down after the first quarter,” Durant said. “But my coaches and my teammates continued to encourage me and told me they believed in me. It just clicked for me and I started to make a few shots and free throws.
“Once your teammates give you that confidence, no matter what you feel good, and I was able to make some shots.”

Durant scored 18 of his game high 38 points in the fourth quarter as Oklahoma City surged into the lead.

Late in the fourth quarter, Duran’ts evening was capped off with a one foot fade away shot, aka the dirk shot, as the shot clock expired to push the lead to five points, really just silenced the crowd.

Post Game Grades

Turnovers:  B
Oklahoma City took care of the ball. They turned it over just 13 times. That’s 4 under their league worst 17 a game. Hard to believe if Durant had just limited himself how low they could’ve been. It was just a really good job of taking care of possessions and not allowing Orlando any extra chances.

Assists: A
Giving the Thunder an A here. Honestly, wanted to give them an A+, however, they’re under 20, so I need to remain objective… Westbrook was beastly in this game. He had a double-double. Capped off the double-double with 10 assists.  He did this with a majority of the offense really just inconsistent tonight.

James Harden:  B-
Harden played okay. He wasn’t the sixth man of the year ability tonight. However, he was effective enough. Some nights for young players, that’s all you have to be at times. He finished with 13 points on 5 assists and 5 rebounds.

Thunder Thoughts

  • Oh my goodness, Kevin Durant! He was just on fire. He almost outscored the Magic by himself (KD: 18 ORL: 21)
  • This game, to me, never really felt out of reach. OKC was down 14, but this is a team that can win any game.
  • That’s 2 straight double-doubles for the All-Star, Russell Westbrook
  • Royal Ivey has really been stepping up. He hit two BIG three point shots tonight. Very impressed with this composure of this player. He’s my Jeremy Lin.
  • Bench scoring was key: OKC 24, ORL 12.
  • This was Oklahoma City’s first win in Orlando as the OKC franchise. First win since 2004 for the fanchise overall.
  • More on that: OKC has now won in every NBA city since moving to Oklahoma City. They’ve now beaten every team on the road and at home. Impressive.
  • Russell Westbrook rolled his ankle again. He’s listed as day-to-day. As Jason Hines pointed out, if it was anyone BUT Russell Westbrook, I’d expect them to miss the Atlanta game.
  • Oklahoma city hasn’t lost a game in 2 weeks. Last loss was February 15th at Houston, a one point loss.
  • The Thunder finished February 12-3.

Next up: At Atlanta on Saturday

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