Russell Westbrook was a man on a mission in the first half and Paul George was the man to complete it in the second half. Both players combined to score 72 points, most this season for the Thunder, as the Oklahoma City Thunder beat the Golden State Warriors 125-105 on Tuesday night.
Oklahoma City ended a four-game losing streak, improving to 31-24 on the season.
The Thunder are also 2-0 against the Warriors this season. It’s also the first win at the Oracle for the Thunder since April 11, 2013, a span of seven straight losses.
Westbrook decided how this game was going to go early on. His aggressive game play put the Warriors on their heels to start the game and that’s also where they finished. Westbrook had 21 points in the opening frame on 9-of-11 from the floor.
Carmelo Anthony sprained his right ankle early in the game and would never return. It’s the first time in Anthony’s career in which he did not score a single point. His previous career low was one point, back on Jan. 24, 2012.
Oklahoma City jumped out to their first double-digit lead in the first quarter, leading 24-14 on a free throw. The lead ballooned to 14 as the quarter came to a close, the Thunder lead 42-30 at the end of one.
Golden State never stood a chance as Westbrook and George took turns going in on the champs.
The Thunder pushed the lead out to 21 points, on a George step back three as Oklahoma City went up 89-68 with 5:46 left in the third quarter. Golden State never really made a dent in the Thunder’s advantage, never getting any closer than 19 in the remainder of the game.
Steven Adams, despite picking up four fouls early in the third quarter fought valiantly as the Warriors had no answer for his offensive prowess. Adams had 10 points and eight rebounds in the second half, finishing with 14 points and 10 rebounds.
Oklahoma City’s stingy defense held the Warriors to 8-of-28 from three-point range and forced 25 turnovers. Those 25 turnovers were recycled for 37, count ’em 37 Thunder points.
Draymond Green was ejected with 8:13 remaining after a second technical when he argued with the officials.
Golden State had been 11-0 following a loss this season,. However, the Thunder were on a mission tonight. The Warriors also lost for the first time in seven games when taking on an opponent that had previously beaten them this season, with the Thunder having won 108-91 at OKC on Nov. 22.
The Thunder now travel to Los Angeles to play the Lakers to round out their series against the Lonzo Ball-less squad. Tip-off is scheduled for 9:30 p.m. on TNT. We’ll have your game coverage on all of our social media accounts. Los Angeles beat the Thunder 108-104 on Sunday afternoon.
Keys to the Game
Limit three-point makes: A+
I think this is a tough one the Warriors but without how bad the Thunder have played over the last week or two, this is definitely key. Oklahoma City held the Warriors to only 8-of-28 (28.6 percent) from three tonight. That’s how you beat the Warriors. However, now do that for seven games. It’s tough.
Second chance opportunities: A+
If I would’ve told you Golden State dominated the boards and the Thunder would still win, you’d call me a psychopath and have me locked up. However, free me as you would Free Meek, that’s what happened tonight. The biggest difference is what the Thunder did with their offensive boards. The Thunder outscored Golden State 22-9 on second chance scoring, despite being the Warriors grabbing more offensive boards (11-10).
Steven Adams: B
If it wasn’t for the foul trouble in the first half, this would be an A+. Golden State had no answer for the Kiwi. He finished with 14 points and 10 rebounds. However, most of his damage was done in the second half. He didn’t let foul trouble stop him as he banged down low and was really a difference maker tonight.We invite you to follow Thunder Digest on Twitter and like Thunder Digest on Facebook. Our Podcast is on iTunes. We also have a Thunder Digest Instagram account if you love fun Thunder photography!