There was a lot riding on tonight’s Oklahoma City Thunder-Miami Heat game. The buildup was there. MVP candidacy was on the line. Two of the best teams were in action.
After a horrid start in which the Thunder fell behind 22-4 in the opening minutes, OKC came back to win 112-95, improving to 37-10 on the season.
Kevin Durant scored 33 points to go with seven rebounds and five assists in the win. He started out slow, but eventually started getting his looks and the shots, as they have so often of late, began to fall.
Kendrick Perkins played only the first five minutes of this game. The Thunder were outscored by 13 points during that time.
To start the second half, Scott Brooks elected to start Perry Jones in the place of Perkins, matching the small lineup that Miami had. The Thunder extended their five-point halftime lead and eventually ran away with the game.
The Thunder knocked down 16 three-point shots in the game out of 27 attempts. Durant hit four, Derek Fisher hit all five of his attempts, two of which banked in off the glass, and Jeremy Lamb made four-of-six.
OKC would only turn the ball over 12 times while Miami did so 20 times. There was a stretch in the third quarter while Miami was trying to come back where the turnovers hurt them especially hard. It was uncharacteristic but a lot of credit needs to go to the Thunder defense as well.
LeBron finished with 34 points, three rebounds and three assists. He shot 12-for-20 from the field but overall, felt pretty quiet.
Chris Bosh scored 18 and Dwyane Wade had 15.
Fisher and Lamb matched Bosh and Wade’s point total. Serge Ibaka scored 22 on 20 shots.
The Thunder will play next at Brooklyn on Friday.