OKC Thunder Lose OT Heartbreaker in Phoenix


Final. 3. 66. 28. 149

Nothing is worse than watching the Thunder play flat out bad. But that’s exactly what the beginning of this game against Phoenix was tonight.

It took massive amounts of depth, something the Thunder have always lacked, to pull together after falling down 15 early. Enes Kanter was the only one that had any shots falling, after Russell Westbrook finished the first quarter on 0-of-8 shooting. With OKC’s only source of offense, Enes, checking out, it was up to the bench to put together a run. And that’s exactly what they did.

D.J. Augustin took the reigns of the offense and ran it like a true backup floor general (I’m talking to you Reggie) while dishing it to Dion Waiters, who started the game with 10 points on 4-of-4 shooting. Pulling within single digits again, Enes and Russ took the floor and were able to cut the deficit to five by the half. The Thunder opened the third quarter on a 10-0 run.

But the Suns pushed OKC to the limit, forcing a one possession game with 30 seconds left until Russell completed a three-point play and Serge demolished one of those Morris twins to send it into OT. However, poor play down the stretch and a missed layup (not blaming Russ, just saying it was missed), ultimately led to defeat.

Westbrook tonight: 39 points, 11 assist, 14 rebounds, and 3 steals, his fourth triple-double of the season (leads the NBA). Serge contributed 13 points and 9 rebounds to go along with three blocks. Waiters had 16 points, but made a major bonehead error, throwing an incredibly errant pass to Augustin with less than a minute left in OT. Speaking of D.J., he had 13 points and three assists in a solid effort.

Truly a valiant effort by OKC, but they just couldn’t quite pull out enough miracles to get the win tonight. Great job Russell.

"Lightning Bolts"

  • Westbrook and Ibaka shooting in the first quarter: 4-of-20.
  • Okay…I know OKC’s offense sputtered early and they couldn’t hit shots, but once Augustin stepped on the floor, I saw movement from this squad that I have never seen from a Thunder team before. Guys were flying everywhere, screens were abundant, and Oklahoma City almost looked like a vintage San Antonio team.
  • Kanter showed why he was such a huge acquisition for this team tonight. Early on when the Thunder fell down by 12 and couldn’t get anything to fall, Russell finally decided “Hey, let’s dump it down to the big guy and have him do his thing.” Almost each one of those possessions led to a bucket or two free throws. This element is brand new to the franchise and could turn out to be crucial when a bucket is needed in the playoffs.
  • Can you imagine last season’s Thunder team falling behind by 15, even with Kevin Durant? They probably could have pulled it off, just because Durant is Durant and Westbrook is Westbrook, but it would have been way more work. This year’s team has depth and efficiency the likes of which have never been seen in Bricktown.
  • Thunder opened the second half on a 10-0 run. That’s great stuff right there.
  • Love that this team is winning, but come back Kevin :(.
  • The Morris Twins are the worst kind of players. And there’s two of them.
  • Will the NBA ever realize that NO ONE LIKES THE SHORT-SLEEVED JERSEYS? Not only do they look terrible, but players constantly complain about the sleeves affecting their shots. But I digress…
  • Gotta give Eric Bledsoe some serious props. The dude almost had a triple-double, demolished Waiters on a fastbreak dunk, and almost single-handedly carried the Suns.
  • Heartbreaking loss. On the last play of the game, P.J. Tucker flopped and it seemed Westbrook had a wide-open layup to tie the game. But he must have screwed up his ankle on the way up (Editor’s Note: He did…by stepping on one of those damn Morris twins…) because not only did he miss the reverse, he was rolling around on the floor for a few minutes.
  • Next game: @ POR, February 27, 9:30 P.M. CST.

Highlight of the Night

Good to see you Perry and Jeremy.

Tweet of the Night

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