Notebook: Thunder 122, Lakers 105



Posted Mar 6, 2013 1:53 AM

Randy Renner, for NBA.com

THE FACTS: The Oklahoma City Thunder tied an all-time NBA record with just two turnovers and used lockdown defense to shut out the Los Angeles Lakers over the last six minutes of the game to win 122-105. Thunder point guard Russell Westbrook led all scorers with 37 points on 15-for-29 shooting. Westbrook also led the Thunder in rebounds with 10 and added five assists. Kevin Durant had 26 points, nine rebounds and three blocks. Serge Ibaka added 13 points, six boards and a couple of blocks.

Kobe Bryant led the Lakers with 30 points and was bothered by a bruised elbow for much of the game. Point guard Steve Nash had 20 points (tying his season-high) and Metta World Peace added 16 points. World Peace rolled his right ankle in the last seconds of the game and was being X-rayed in the L.A. locker room. Dwight Howard was bothered by a sore back most of the game and scored just six points on 1-for-7 shooting. Howard pulled down a game-high 16 rebounds.

The Thunder also got big games from their backup point guards. Reggie Jackson hit a couple of big layups to stave off a late Laker rally, finishing with 10 points on 5-for-7 shooting while former Laker Derek Fisher hit a couple of big 3s and also finished with 10 points on 3-for-4 shooting.

The Thunder dominated in the paint (52-22) and on the fast break (22-6) and held the Lakers to just 40.3 percent shooting. OKC was charged with two turnovers but they thought they really only had one. Ronnie Brewer thought his pass to Nick Collison was tipped out of bounds by a Laker but the officials ruled it out on Brewer.

QUOTABLE: "Well, who would have thought we'd only end up with two turnovers when we're averaging 15-16 a game? I like our guys figuring out ways not to turn it over. It was just one of those games. The defense was really key too."

-- Thunder coach Scott Brooks

THE STAT: The Lakers scored just 16 points in the fourth quarter and came up empty over the last six minutes. The Thunder held L.A. to 26.3 percent shooting in the fourth quarter and the Lakers missed their last 10 shots. That, coupled with an 0-for-10 start to the game gave the Lakers (courtesy the Thunder defense) about as bad a beginning and ending as you could come up with.

QUOTABLE II: "The slow start didn't help, turnovers (16), we missed foul shots (nine) and wide open shots. We had to battle through some injuries and battle through foul trouble. We had to play a little bit better to beat a good team and we didn't do it."

-- Lakers coach Mike D'Antoni

TURNING POINT: The Thunder never trailed and led by as many as 18 but the Lakers closed the gap to 10 points in the third quarter and on down to just five in the fourth but that's when the Thunder put the clamps on L.A.'s offense and went on a 12-0 run to close the game.

QUOTABLE III: "We don't have the athleticism that they do so if we allow them to play to their strengths we're going to be in trouble. We have to be able to alter that."

-- Bryant

HOT: Westbrook was 6-for-10 (13 points) in the first quarter and was 9-for-16 (19 points) at halftime. ... Durant was 7-for-12 (20 points) in the first 24 minutes. ... Bryant was 5-for-9 (18 points) at halftime. ... Nash was 6-for-8 in the second half.

NOT: The Lakers missed their first 10 shots and turned the ball over five times in the first six minutes of the game. ... Nash and Howard were each 1-for-7 at halftime. ... Howard did not take a shot in the second half. ... Durant was 2-for-10 in the last 24 minutes. ... Bryant was 3-for-10 in the second half.

INSIDE THE ARENA: The 97th consecutive sell-out inside Chesapeake Energy Arena went nuts during the break between the third and fourth quarters when a fan swished a half-court shot and won $20,000. Heath Kufahl, who said after the game he's actually a Lakers fan, is a high school teacher whose wife has cancer. The couple has seven children.

GOOD MOVE: Early in the game Ibaka went high and blocked a shot from Howard then blocked a follow shot from Earl Clark to get the home crowd roaring early.

BAD MOVE: Durant keeps creeping closer and closer to a suspension-earning 16th technical foul. He picked up his 13th when he said something to lead official Joey Crawford after teammate Derek Fisher had been given a technical for arguing with official Kevin Fehr over a foul called on Nick Collison. So what were the magic words Durant said to Crawford? "I asked him, hey can I talk to you? And he got me with one," Durant told reporters after the game.

NOTABLE: Before Tuesday the last time Oklahoma City had fewer than five turnovers in a game was in the second round of the 2012 playoffs against ... the Lakers (four). ...The 37 points OKC scored in the first quarter and the 71 the Thunder had at halftime were both season-highs for those points in a game...

UP NEXT: For the Lakers, Wednesday @ New Orleans, Friday vs. Toronto, Sunday vs. Chicago. For the Thunder, Thursday @ New York, Friday @ Charlotte, Sunday vs. Boston.