Thunder Holds Off Pesky Warriors in OT
Thursday, May 26th 2011, 12:18 pm
By: News On 6
Originally Published: Mar 29, 2011 10:5 PM CDTGrant Belcher
Oklahoma Sports Staff Writer
OKLAHOMA CITY – The Thunder gave Oklahoma City fans an exciting finish on Tuesday, but it shouldn’t have been that way.
OKC pulled off a 115-114 overtime victory against Golden State, but not before nearly throwing the game away.
With 11 seconds remaining and a comfortable six-point lead, Oklahoma City gave up a 3-pointer to Reggie Williams.
Golden State’s Monta Ellis immediately turn around, stole the inbounds pass and drained a 3 just three seconds later to knot the score at 106 and silence the shocked Thunder crowd.
With six seconds left, Kevin Durant took the ball and drove to the right side of the court, hoisting up a contested jumper that airballed.
Durant started overtime with a 3-pointer, but Golden State used a 7-2 run to lead 114-112 with just more than a minute left.
But another jumper from Durant and a free throw from Westbrook gave OKC the final margin as the defense held off a potential game-winner from Ellis.
Durant led all scorers with 39 points on 13-of-23 shooting. He added six rebounds and five assists.
The Thunder got a bit of a wakeup call after holding eight of their previous nine opponents to less than 100 points.
Golden State (32-43), known for its up-tempo style of play, put up 104 shots on the night, many of them off of turnovers.
OKC turned the ball over 19 times and the Warriors turned those into 28 points.
Serge Ibaka had 19 points and eight boards for the Thunder, and Russell Westbrook had 15 and nine assists, but turned the ball over six times.
Kendrick Perkins tied a season high in rebounding with 13.
Former Edmond Santa Fe forward Ekpe Udoh, who has been starting for the Warriors in the absence of injured center Andris Biedrins, had 12 points, six boards and three blocks.
Thunder forward Nick Collison sat out the game with a sprained ankle, but guard Nate Robinson returned in uniform for the first time in nearly a month.
The win finished out a six-game home stand for Oklahoma City, which will now hit the road for a quick turnaround against Phoenix.
The Thunder (49-24) will tip off against the Suns at 9 p.m. central time on Wednesday.