Originally Published: Feb 20, 2010 9:55 PM CDT
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Oklahoma Sports Staff Writer
NEW YORK CITY – Kevin Durant sank a clutch 3-pointer with time running down in regulation, and the Oklahoma City Thunder won its first overtime game of the season 121-118 over the New York Knicks Saturday.
Durant’s 3-pointer came with six seconds left in regulation, and capped an 8-2 OKC run to force overtime. The shot came after the Knicks (19-35) had several opportunities to put the game away, but failed to do so.
After being forced to claw back late in the fourth quarter, the Thunder (32-21) had to do it again in overtime. Oklahoma City trailed with 30 seconds left in the extra period, but Durant stepped up once more and scored the Thunder’s final four points of the game. Danilo Gallinari missed a 3-pointer as time expired in OT to seal Oklahoma City’s win.
The Thunder trailed by as much as 11 points in the first half, marking the second straight game it has come back from a double-digit deficit to win. OKC also had to withstand big performances from new Knicks Tracy McGrady and Eddie House. Both players were making their New York debut, and they combined to score 50 points.
McGrady scored 19 points in the first half and led the Knicks to a 57-52 lead at halftime. The Thunder then outscored the Knicks 30-23 in the third quarter to take a two-point lead into the fourth quarter, setting up the game’s thrilling finish.
Oklahoma City got strong performances across the board. Durant finished with 36 points, his 27th straight game with 25 points or more. That ties the second-longest such streak in NBA history and makes him the youngest player to ever accomplish the feat.
Russell Westbrook scored 31, dished out 10 assists and pulled down nine rebounds, finishing one board shy of a triple-double. Nick Collison added 10 points off the bench, including two big baskets late in overtime. Collison also drew three charging fouls on defense -- one of which led to Oklahoma City taking the lead in overtime -- and set a screen that allowed Durant to get open on his 3-pointer at the end of regulation.
The Thunder has now won eight consecutive games, which is the longest current winning streak in the NBA. It will travel to Minnesota to face the Timberwolves at 6 p.m. Sunday.
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