Five most significant games of the OKC Thunder in the 2022-23 season

Jalen Williams #8 of the Oklahoma City Thunder (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Jalen Williams #8 of the Oklahoma City Thunder (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) /
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OKC Thunder
Jevon Carter #5 of the Milwaukee Bucks shoots over Aleksej Pokusevski #17 of the Oklahoma City Thunder (Photo by Ian Maule/Getty Images) /

OKC Thunder falls to the Bucks in gritty double OT game

There are few things in basketball that are more exciting than a double-overtime game.

Going toe-to-toe against a team that ended the season with the best record, the OKC Thunder showed their feisty brand of basketball before yielding to the Milwaukee Bucks, 132-136, at home on November 10.

This was another comeback rally from the Thunder as they erased a 12-point cushion with five minutes left in the fourth quarter to force the first overtime.

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander was on his usual tear in the game, tallying 39 points, but none was bigger than his step back three-pointer with 0.6 seconds left in the first overtime that would have given the Thunder the win, if only Brook Lopez did not got hacked on an off-the-inbounds lob with 0.2 ticks left — which he subsequently split the free throw of to enter the second overtime.

From there, the Thunder shot 2-of-9 and ultimately fell to the Bucks, who missed the services of their superstar trio of Jrue Holiday, Khris Middleton, and Giannis Antetokounmpo as Jevon Carter dropped a career-high 36 points.

There were so much underlying stories in the game for the Thunder — the continued rise of Gilgeous-Alexander, Josh Giddey brilliance, and Tre Mann’s scoring bursts — however, it was Aleksej Pokusevski’s matchups with Milwaukee’s hefty front court — from Lopez to Bobby Portis — that stole the show for OKC.

In this game, Poku showed his leap in terms of his physical tools, often matching well with Lopez, especially down the stretch, which saw him body up the seven-foot veteran on most possessions, including a block using his long limbs. It’s safe to say that it was a game where Poku established himself in the center position.

Pokusevski finished the game with 17 points, on four threes made, 10 rebounds, two blocks, and two steals.

It may have ended in a loss to a shorthanded team, but the game proved the Thunder’s never-give-up attitude and the promising glimpse of what could be Pokusevski’s place for the team in the future.