The Oklahoma City Thunder won their fourth straight game on Monday night when they beat the Phoenix Suns 102-90. In doing so, they became the first team in the NBA to get to 30 wins this season.
For the Thunder, Kevin Durant recorded his fourth 40-point game this year when he dropped 41 on the Suns. Partner in crime Russell Westbrook put up 36, as well as eight rebounds and five assists. Serge Ibaka did not play again on Monday, as he is still out with a chest contusion.
Shannon Brown scored 21 for Phoenix, while Marcin Gortat had 19 points and 15 points. Gortat played well, but will be remembered in this game not for his stats but for being the victim of a vicious posterization.
OKC has been incredibly dominant on the road as of late, as they had already won two consecutive games away from Chesapeake Arena. At Phoenix, things would be no different.
Durant scored 27 of his 41 points in the second half, including an astounding 19 points in the 4th quarter alone. He began shooting the lights out with a fastbreak layup, drained another from 19 feet away, then followed with a 3-pointer to put the Thunder up 79-72. Later, he sank another one beyond the arc, another 19-footer, and then a final layup. But the grand finale came on OKC’s next possession when Durant powered through the lane and slammed it down in Phoenix’s Gortat’s face. Gortat fouled him on the play and Durant made the free throw to put the Thunder up 97-81 with just over two minutes left.
To their credit, the Suns stuck it to the Thunder in the 3rd quarter, going on a 14-4 run that brought the score within four, 72-68. They did not have enough in the tank to sustain the surge, and the Thunder, aided by Durant’s late burst, would go on to win.
The Thunder now are the sole proprietors of the best record in the NBA, at 30-8. They return home next to face the Denver Nuggest on Wed., Jan. 16, at Chesapeake Arena.