6 Players who had five-or-more rebounds for the Thunder
7 Blocked shots for the Thunder, including three each from Kevin Durant and Serge Ibaka
9 Assists for Kevin Durant, one shy of a career high
9 Players who scored on the night for the Thunder
10-for-17 Shooting numbers for Kevin Durant, who scored a game-high 33 points
12 Points for Kendrick Perkins, tying a season-high
19 Lead changes in the game, which also featured 16 ties
OAKLAND – On the second night of a road back-to-back, the Thunder found itself in a one-possession game against a quality opponent with only seconds remaining,
On Wednesday night against the Golden State Warriors, Head Coach Scott Brooks' club got the stop it needed, but couldn't quite make that last offensive play necessary to regain control or send the game into overtime. Ultimately the Warriors made a few extra plays down the stretch in an 8-2 run to take charge, sending the Thunder along to its next stop of a six-game road trip with a 104-99 loss.
"It came down to the last minute of the game, and anytime that happens we feel that we have a good chance to win the game," Brooks said. "But they made a few more plays than us."
Early on the Thunder got fantastic contributions from Kevin Martin, who finished with 16 points, and Kevin Durant who had 18 points and eight assists at halftime. Durant was ping-ponging passes all over the court, managing double teams and dishing to open shooters on the drive-and-dish. In the second half he took on more of the scoring burden as he finished with 33 points on 10-for-17 shooting.
"It's easy to label him as a scorer, but he is a two-way player, one, and he's a playmaker, two," Brooks said. "He scores points off of his plays. He helps our team score points when he demands attention. He did that tonight. He is an unselfish player. He's a playmaker, he looks for his team and I thought he had a solid game tonight."
He's not normally a prolific scorer, but Kendrick Perkins also brought some energy, toughness and scoring for the Thunder. Going 6-for-8 from the field en route to a season-high-tying 12 points, Perkins consistently finished around the rim and even drove the ball from the free throw line for a slick hook shot over his left shoulder. He also provided his trademark defensive presence and set his patented solid screens to free up teammates.
"He gave us points around the basket, he gave us defense and rebounding," Brooks said. "Perk was good tonight. I thought a lot of guys played well, just like they had a lot of guys play well on their team. It came down to that we turned the ball over also 19 times. That's something that we do occasionally too many times."
Despite the turnovers, the Thunder gave its all and tried to make the correct plays throughout the night. With five different players in double figures, six different players grabbing five-or-more rebounds and nine steals and seven blocks as a team, the Thunder brought it on every possession. That's no surprise for Brooks' club, who will learn from this game, but compartmentalize and focus on its next challenge, the Sacramento Kings.
"There's one thing we always know about our team, we're going to always play hard," Brooks said. "We're going to play hard for 48 minutes. It doesn't matter what part of the schedule or what part of the season."
The Thunder led 92-86 with 5:28 remaining, but the Warriors went on an 8-2 run over the following three minutes that turned the game around. It started with three straight free throws then a David Lee turnaround bank shot was followed up by a dunk by Carl Landry and a runner by Klay Thompson. Meanwhile, the Thunder missed three straight shots.
Plays the box score won't show, first half:
Nice cut by Perkins into the lane and incredible vision by Durant to see him for a layup. Smart play by Durant to throw a bounce pass cross-court to Sefolosha for a three-pointer in the corner. Good activity by the Thunder defenders to get their hands in the passing lane and make a steal. Great hustle by Liggins, Jackson and Collison to regain possession multiple times on an offensive sequence. Laser sharp pass by Durant to Collison on the low block for a layup. Nice play by Martin to slap the ball away from behind on a Warriors fast break.
Plays the box score won't show:
Fight down low by Perkins and Ibaka to tip a defensive rebound out to Sefolosha. Good hustle by Perkins to crash the boards and tip in a missed shot. Nice save by Westbrook to stop a loose ball from going out of bounds. Solid defense by Martin forces an errant drive and a turnover. Good angles by Jackson, Sefolosha and Collison to create passing lanes for a dunk. Durant plays physical post defense to force a difficult missed shot, then goes flying into the first row saving a loose ball.
"We're going to give everything we have and we did that tonight. They made a few extra plays than us. Give them credit. They've been playing well all year." – Head Coach Scott Brooks