The Norman Transcript

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March 25, 2014

Thunder manhandle Nuggets in blowout victory

Oklahoma City comes out firing and never looks back



Reggie Jackson scored 16 points to go along with a career-high 11 assists. It was his second straight double-double.Serge Ibaka added 15 points and seven rebounds.

Denver was paced by Ty Lawson, who had 25 points and seven assists. Timofey Mozgov added 12 points and nine boards. Kenneth Faried and Randy Foye each had 11 points in the loss.

The Nuggets, who were playing the second game of a back to back, didn’t help their cause with 20 turnovers, missing 13 free throws and shooting only 39 percent from the field.

“You can’t turn the ball over as many times as we did, you can’t miss as many free throws as we did against a team this good on their home floor,” Denver coach Brian Shaw said. “That’s a recipe for disaster. And that’s what it ended up being.”

Oklahoma City came out of the gates firing from all over the court. They were especially hot from 3-point range where they hit 6 of 8 in the opening period. Butler, Ibaka and Jackson combined for 24 points to help the Thunder take a 41-24 lead.

“They came out strong and we gave them a lot of easy shots,” Lawson said. “It felt like they weren’t working for anything. Everything was pretty much easy in the first half, I think.”

Denver tried to fight back in the second half as they began the period on a 9-0 run. They closed the gap to six points.

That would be as close as the Nuggets would get. Durant continued his onslaught of the Denver defense. From shaking forward Darrell Arthur for a crowd-gasping layup or draining mid-range jumpers, he easily could have been a one-man gang.

But the Oklahoma City supporting cast was just as effective.

Jackson ended the first half with 10 points and eight assists as the Thunder grabbed a 72-58 advantage, which was a season high in points scored.

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