The Oklahoma City Thunder got back to their winning ways with a 111-105 overtime win at home over the Dallas Mavericks.
The Thunder improve to 22-6 on the year, just a half game behind the streaking Los Angeles Clippers for the best record in the NBA.
The Thunder didn’t play their best game last night and were really poor defensively in particular. Dallas point guard Darren Collison shredded the Thunder defense to the tune of 32 points.
Collison made a crazy 3-pointer as time expired in regulation to send the game into overtime as well.
OKC also shot just 41.9 percent from the field but got after it on the offensive glass 17 times to gain extra possessions.
Dirk Nowitzki was back in the Dallas lineup for just the second time this season and scored nine points in 26 minutes off the bench. Dallas’ leading scorer O.J. Mayo was held to four points on 1-of-7 shooting.
Here are the Game Grades:
Kevin Durant – 49 minutes, 40 points, 8 rebounds, 5 assists – A
Durant was unstoppable for the most part last night. Playing 49 minutes, his legs looked to get a little tired as he missed his last few field goals and didn’t score in overtime. He played the entire second half which is usual for him in close games that the Thunder are trailing after three. Maybe he gets overworked in these games and would be better off getting a little rest while Russell Westbrook plays more or Jeremy Lamb gets a shot. Durant was particularly great with his spot-up threes making 4-of-8 in the game and he also blocked three shots.
Russell Westbrook – 42 minutes, 16 points, 10 assists, 6 rebounds – B
If not for overtime, Westbrook would have finished with just eight points in the game. But he doubled up his points in the final five minutes leaving a positive imprint on the game after all. It wasn’t just the 7-for-20 shooting by Westbrook that represented his struggles but also allowing Collison to go off like he did. Westbrook has not been the cool, under control self that he displayed during the Thunder’s 12-game winning streak. He looks like the old, out of control Westbrook lately.
Serge Ibaka – 42 minutes, 19 points, 17 rebounds, 5 blocks – A+
This was one of Ibaka’s best games last night. The big block number was there as he defended as well as ever. He made 7-of-10 field goals as well and grabbed eight offensive rebounds which were crucial to the Thunder winning. Just a great all-around effort from Ibaka last night.
Kevin Martin – 35 minutes, 18 points, 7 rebounds, 2 assists – A
Martin quietly got his last night and when that’s the case, it seems to be a very good scenario for the Thunder. He made half of his shots from the field and from three and the seven boards was a big plus from Martin who usually does nothing but score. A few of his baskets came at very important times too when it looked like the Thunder weren’t going to get offense anywhere else.
Kendrick Perkins – 23 minutes, 0 points, 7 rebounds, 3 blocks – C+
This wasn’t one of those bad Perkins games although the Thunder are still always better when he’s not in. He did a good job while he was out there though making a big impact defensively. He went 0-for-6 from the field which is pretty much unacceptable but it didn’t feel that bad watching the game.
Thabo Sefolosha – 34 minutes, 8 points, 2 rebounds, 2 assists – B+
When Sefolosha knocks down a few threes, it’s always a very good thing. He went 2-of-6 from deep last night but that was fine. His defense on Mayo was pretty darn good too.
Nick Collison – 18 minutes, 2 points, 2 rebounds, 2 assists – B
Normally against Dallas, Collison is very valuable as a Dirk-stopper but he wasn’t really needed to do that last night. He was solid as always while he was out there though.
Reggie Jackson – 11 minutes, 6 points, 7 rebounds, 2 assists – B+
Jackson has officially taken over the backup point guard job now and it will be a new breed at that position for OKC. He isn’t the distributor Eric Maynor is and is a much better athlete capable of filling up the box score in other ways, as evidence by his seven boards last night. Jackson was aggressive looking for his shot but made just 2-of-7 overall. He looks pretty promising though and it will be nice if he is able to start setting up others as well.
Hasheem Thabeet – 11 minutes, 2 points – C
Thabeet didn’t grab a rebound and his minutes have been declining of late. No big deal here but he just isn’t showing the improvement he did earlier in the year.