Oklahoma City trailed for a split second in the first quarter, but never looked back as Oklahoma City led by as many as 21 points in the first half. Portland made a run of it in the third quarter, cutting it to five points, but Russell Westbrook said no more and helped Oklahoma City push it to 18 points on mulitple occasions. Oklahoma City Oklahoma City came out on fire and never let up.
Portland led 3-2 in the first quarter, but Oklahoma City came out, pushed it to an 8-3 lead early on, and never was remotely close in the first half. Kevin Durant grabbed two early fouls in the first quarter and was sent to the bench midway through. So, Westbrook stepped up and had 8 points, 4 assists in the first quarter as Oklahoma City dominated and led 32-18 after one.
The second quarter saw a Durant explosion. Kevin Durant finished the second quarter 5-5 and finished the first half with 15 first half points. Oklahoma City used a flurry of turnovers and bad shot selections by Portland to extend an already 14 point first quarter lead to a 21 point lead late in the quarter. Oklahoma City led 65-44 late in the second quarter. The Thunder would go on to hold a 65-47 lead at the break.
Portland wouldn’t go down without a fight though. After Oklahoma City pushed it to a 20 point lead early on, the Blazers would slowly chip away at the lead. Then they took it down to five points with 4:43 to go in the third quarter at 71-66. Then Westbrook took over. Westbrook would score the next six points for the Thunder as they extended the lead to 77-68. Both teams traded buckets to end the quarter with the Thunder up 84-75 after three quarters.
Then Westbrook took it over. He had 10 fourth quarter points. Oklahoma City never really were threatened again by the Blazers as they pushed the lead to 109-91, and the Blazers did score the game final five points of the game. Oklahoma City improved to 38-12 and 16-8 on the road. They moved to within five game of clinching the divisional title for the second straight year.
Post Game Grades
Limit Turnovers: B
Oklahoma City only had 14 turnovers. They did a really good job at limiting turnovers until the second half. Oklahoma City had 11 going into the fourth quarter, but second and third team caused some in the final couple of minutes.
Russell Westbrook: A+
The Honey Badger had 32 points, 8 assists in 35 game minutes. Only real flack I have to say about Westbrook is he went 0-3 from the free throw line. No one on the Trail Blazers could cover him at all. He was just on fire int he second half. He had 20 points in the second half. He had 12 points and 7 assists in the first half.
Control the Noise: A
Oklahoma City jumped on the Blazers early and never let up. Portland made a run, but the Thunder did a really good job of putting this team away in the third and fourth quarters to really stomp out any chance of getting the crowd involved. This is what elite teams do.
No Thunder Thoughts due to the late tip-off, sorry. Will be back for the Laker’s game.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!