OKLAHOMA CITY — OKLAHOMA CITY -- While the outside world lives to marvel and discuss Oklahoma City’s offensive prowess, coach Scott Brooks normally takes a different view. He likes to brag about the tenacity and fierceness of the Thunder’s defense. To him, it’s what the team’s success has been built on.
However, after Sunday’s 125-117 loss to the L.A. Clippers, Brooks wasn’t able to do much boasting.
“I think it’s obvious we have to get back to playing defensive basketball,” Brooks said. “We’re a very good defensive team, but we didn’t play like that tonight. We gave up 44 points in a quarter, that’s usually what we allow in a half. We just have to get back to what we do well.”
For the Clippers, it was easily their biggest road win of the season, and one the players know they needed.
“This one was big for us,” Clippers forward Blake Griffin said. “We haven’t really made a statement on the road. We’ve won games, but we hadn’t won big games. So this was great for us.”
The win broke a two game losing streak for the Clippers while handing the Thunder their second straight defeat at home. But Kevin Durant isn’t panicking yet.
“Every night we’re not going to be great,” Durant said. “Unless you guys come in and beat us up all the time and talk negative to us, we’re going to think that way. So, we have to keep our heads up, keep pushing and keep getting better. Just learn from our mistakes and we’ll be all right.”
With 4:29 left in the fourth quarter, L.A. Clippers guard Chris Paul knocked down a wide-open 3-pointer to give the Clippers a 112-109 lead. Thunder guard Russell Westbrook responded with a 3-pointer of his own to tie game.