Game Recap - Thunder 113, Pacers 89

--The Thunder got off to a hot start on both ends of the court. Indiana didn’t score for the first 4:15 of the game, Oklahoma City led 10-2 at that point and 21-7 with 4:14 left in the first quarter. The Thunder were hitting 63.6% (7-for-11) and the Pacers just 15.4% (2-for-13).
--After that start the Thunder kept the pedal to the metal, leading by 27 after three quarters and by as many as 35 in the fourth. Cruise control after that. “I was very pleased with the way we played tonight,” said Thunder coach Scott Brooks. “The defense got after it early and we moved the ball well on offense. I thought Thabo (Sefolosha) was really good on (Danny) Granger.”
--Granger, who had 27 points Tuesday night against Golden State, had just nine against the Thunder on 3-for-11 shooting.
--Thunder defense limited the Pacers to just 18 points on 5-for-23 shooting in the first quarter.
“We came out with a good defensive mindset,” said Thunder All-Star point guard Russell Westbrook. “When we play good defense it opens up for everybody on offense.”
--Nate Robinson gets into the game late in the second quarter and is welcomed with a rousing ovation. He scored on a nice reverse layup just before the half. Robinson finished with six points. Center Nazr Mohammed scored eight points and grabbed seven rebounds in his Thunder debut.
“They’re good players, they’ve been with good organizations and they pick up things very quick,” Brooks said. “I thought Nazr gave us solid minutes as the starter. He understands how to get his teammates open. I thought he was good on both ends of the floor.”
--James Harden with an outstanding first half, 17 points on 5-for-9 shooting. Harden was being aggressive too, his 3-pointers weren’t falling (0-for-3) but he was driving the lane and drawing fouls. Harden was 7-for-7 from the free throw line in the first half.
--Daequan Cook has been smokin hot from long range lately. Over his last six games he’s 19-for-37 on three pointers (51.4%) “DC’s a terrific shooter and we need that,” Brooks said. “He got off to a bad start, I benched him but he kept working and stayed with it. He has a great attitude and now when he takes that shot you expect it to go in.”

PLAYS THE BOX SCORE WON’T SHOW: In the first 45 seconds of the game center Nazr Mohammed made his presence felt by stopping Josh McRoberts’ drive to the basket resulting in an Indiana turnover. Moments later Nazy grabbed a rebound...At the 9:32 mark of the first quarter Mohammed again stops a drive this time by Pacers center Roy Hibbert and Mohammed snatches the ball away for another turnover...Russell Westbrook with a nice steal, stepping into the passing lane and racing down court for a layup giving OKC a 10-0 lead...Kevin Durant with a nifty spin move on Dahntay Jones and then he drops the shot in from about 12 feet...Serge Ibaka has been very active in the first quarter, he’s altered several shots, prevented drives into the lane and has swatted a couple of shots...Westbrook powered into the lane in the second quarter, went up as if about to shoot but instead passed the ball to Harden who was running free along the baseline for an easy layup...Ibaka with another block in the third quarter , his fourth of the game, it leads to a fast break that Durant finishes with a slam...Westbrook and Thabo Sefolosha have been clogging the passing lanes all night, halfway through the third quarter Russ steps in and knocks the ball away from Brandon Rush and races away on another fast break. Westbrook scores despite being fouled by Rush...

STATS WORTH REPEATING: The Thunder defense had one of its best outings of the year, holding Indiana to 89 points on just 34.1% shooting. The Pacers picked up 30 of those 89 points at the free throw line.Thabo Sefolosha and Russell Westbrook limited Indiana’s Danny Granger and Darren Collison to a combined 20 points on 5-for-22 shooting. Nine of those 20 points came at the stripe.

LAST WORD: “I don’t look at them (Nazr Mohammed, Nate Robinson and Kendrick Perkins) as new guys anymore. They are each one of 14 Thunder players. We will move forward as a group. Earlier they were “the new guys” but now they’re one of the 14 guys.”
--Scott Brooks

UP NEXT: The Thunder will fly to Atlanta Thursday afternoon for Friday night’s game with the Hawks. Tipoff is set for 6:30 PM on Fox Sports Oklahoma and the Thunder Radio Network.