J.R. Smith missed a jump shot as time expired as the Oklahoma City Thunder beat the New York Knicks 95-94 at Madison Square Garden Thursday night.
Smith led the Knicks with 36 points on the night and had 31 of those points in the second and third quarters. New York led 81-75 entering the final period but the Thunder shut down Smith and the Knicks in the final frame.
Kevin Durant led the Thunder with 34 points, eight rebounds and six assists. Durant played 44 minutes in the game and did a lot of his work at the free throw line where he was 14-for-15.
Carmelo Anthony did not play in the game for New York as he missed his second straight game with a sore right knee.
Russell Westbrook led the way early for OKC scoring 15 of his 21 points in the first quarter. Kevin Martin was super efficient with 16 points on 4-of-6 shooting off the bench.
The Knicks took the lead 94-93 with 1:38 left in the game after two free throws by Amare Stoudemire, who scored 16 points off the bench.
Durant would get to the line on the next possession for the Thunder and make both attempts, which turned out to be the game-winners for OKC.
The Thunder have now won six of their last seven games and pull to within two and a half games of the San Antonio Spurs for the best record in the Western Conference.
The Thunder will play again tomorrow night on the road vs. the Charlotte Bobcats.