Might be the worst lost of the season. A team playing with out their best interior player, and they grab 21 offensive rebounds. Those 21 rebounds accounted for 15 extra points as the Cleveland Cavaliers bounced back from their embarassing losses last season and stole a victory from Oklahoma City with a 96-90 win.
For Oklahoma City isn’t wasn’t all doom and gloom. They led after one quarter 27-26, and even led at halftime by two points. However, they were just never able to get a true stop on the Cavaliers. Any time it looked like Oklahoma City was primed to pull away in Thunder fashion, an offensive rebound after a defensive stop really just handicapped any momentum Oklahoma City tried to build.
All said in done, Oklahoma City led 85-82 with 3:14 to go in the game. Oklahoma City had the momentum, Cleveland had just called a time out, and over the next 2:25 of the ball game, the Cavaliers would outscore the Thunder 12-0.
That run really just solitified the out come of the ball game for the Thunder. Even though they tried to make a run, it was for not as the Cavs held serve shooting free throws to seal the game.
Post game Grades
Offensive Rebounds: FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFF
I really shouldn’t need to elaborate on this topic. This might have been the single worse performance by the bigs for Oklahoma City and you know what? I place the blame SOLELY on Scott Brooks.
Extra Shots: FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFF
Shot total: Cavs 91, OKC 76. Taht’s a 15 shot difference for the Cavaliers.They hit one more shit than OKlahoma City (38-37). OKC shot 48% to Cleveland’s 41% AND the Cavs won. Makes ZERO sense unless you break down the score board.
Points in the Paint: FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFF
The Thunder allowed 56 points in the paint. Just an absurd amount for a team that is missing their key interior defender and against a team that is supposed to be a quality front line defenders.
- I will call this the worst home loss since losing the the Toronto Raptors last season. In fact, I consider this the worst loss this season overall. Yeah, worse than Washington, worse than Sacramento. This was just a bad performance that really lacked any energy until the middle of the fourth quarter when Royal Ivey started diving on the floor for loose balls.
- I don’t want to say that the Thunder over looked this team, but that’s the feeling I got from the energy in the arena tonight. I don’t think their mind or heart was into the game. They just were shooting long, contested jump shots, lowering their shooting percentage. Fact is they still hit 48%. They shot over 50% for most of this ball game.
- What’s even more scary about this game, OKC shot 48.7% from the floor (37-76). However, they were just 6-24 from three-point range. Oklahoma City shot a crazy 31-52 from the floor inside the three-point line. That’s 59.6%!!!!
- Oklahoma City panicked, and it turned into a jump shooting team. They shot just 17 free throws all night. They came into the league averaging a league best 27 attempts per game. Tonight, they had just 17. What makes that worse is that they hit just 10 of the 17 attempts. Kendrick Perkins was Perkins while going 0-4 from the free throw line.
- Kevin Durant has 24 turnovers in his last 5 games. What the hell?
- Big props to Russell Westbrook though. I thought he played really well. Started out the game by hitting a big three and just facilitated the offense. He only had four assists, but only three turnovers and I felt the offense was okay.
- That said on the offense, this is what Charles Barkley has been talking about. Offense was just very boring. Tons of standing around. Too much one-on-one. When offenses get like that, and the shots aren’t falling, it turns into a night like tonight. Yeah, most of the time OKC is going to steal a win by being able to play one-on-one. Then you’re going to have nights like tonight.
- What was going on in the fourth quarter? I was really just amazed. It looked like the Western Conference Finals final five minutes all over again. I’m just at a loss for words how bad it was tonight. 4-11 in the final five minutes tonight. If you take away the garbage buckets by Durant, it’s 2-9. 6 of the 9 attempts were from beyond 15 feet. Not one shot was taken by anyone other than Westbrook or Durant.
- Why even have Royal Ivey on the court? He just stood in the corner talking to the fans courtside. (not literally). Three different times Oklahoma City settled for deep, contested jump shots while he stood WIDE open from the wing. Kick the ball to him, get some ball movement going. For goodness’s sake!
- Daequan Cook is really forcing it. He doesn’t need to. He was 1-6 from three-point range in 15 minutes. I think he needs to choose his shots a little bit more. I think he’s a bit of a defensive liability as well. I wouldn’t be against seeing Ivey in the starting line up. Cook is just throwing shots up because he wants to get his shots in his minutes. That’s the thing about him, we just need him to be consistently good, not consistently bad.
- Where was Serge Ibaka in the fourth quarter? He was pretty obsolete. Really curious to why Scott Brooks feels the league’s best shot blocker shouldn’t have been in the game.
- Kyrie Irving is something special. He had 9 points 12 assists and really just willed that offense to win this ball game. He scored4 consecutive points late in the fourth quarter to push it from 85-84 deficit for Cleveland to an 88-85 lead for the Cavs. He only had one turnover too in this hostile environment we are calling “The ‘Peake.”
- Oh, my real “LOL” moment was in the waning seconds of the game, Cleveland was breaking the press and they scored a lay up with 16 seconds to go. Oklahoma City wasn’t going to foul. They just tried to trap, no reason to score, but meh I digress. Keep it Classy Cleveland.
- That leads me to my last point. Crowd was horrible tonight, with the exceptions of a couple of moments. I understand it’s the Cavs, but COME ON folks. Tonight was just down right sad.
Okay, that’s it. I could rant all night on this bad loss. I won’t though. That’s the best part about the NBA, tomorrow is another day. Especially in this case, the Bobcats are in town.We invite you to follow Thunder Digest on Twitter and like Thunder Digest on Facebook. Don't forget to subsribe on Youtube! Our Podcast is on iTunes and on Stitcher. We also have a Thunder Digest Instagram account if you love fun Thunder photography!