The Norman Transcript

Sports

November 10, 2013

Durant makes Wizards disappear

Thunder overcome 12 point 4th quarter deficit to earn victory

OKLAHOMA CITY — Before the season started, a poll was taken among NBA general managers on who they’d  want to have the ball in their hands in the final seconds to win or tie a game. Oklahoma City forward Kevin Durant finished first with almost 40 percent of the votes.

Sunday, with his team needing him to come through once again, Durant showed why he has earned that type of respect around the league as he led the Thunder to a 106-105 overtime victory over Washington at the Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City.

“You never feel like it’s over when you got a guy named Kevin Durant on the other side,” Wizards guard John Wall said.

 With 3:19 left in the game, Thunder guard Russell Westbrook and Wizards center Nene were ejected from the game after receiving double technicals during a scuffle that saw Westbrook push Nene.

The altercation seemed to spur the Thunder (5-1) on. Without Nene in the lane, forward Serge Ibaka hit a turnaround jumper with 2:10 left to cut the Wizards’ lead to 92-86.

Guard Jeremy Lamb knocked down a 3-pointer and Ibaka threw down a monster dunk to cut the deficit to 92-91 with 1:10 remaining on clock.

With 18 seconds left, Washington (2-4) led 94-93. With the entire arena screaming defense, guard Bradley Beal cruised to the basket for an easy lay-up and gave the Wizards a three-point advantage.

Durant wasn’t phased. On the ensuing possession, he pulled up from the top of the key and drained a game-tying 3-pointer with forward Trevor Ariza in his face. The game went to overtime.

“I just tried to read the play,” Durant said. “I just needed a little bit of space to get it off. If he had pressured me, I would have tried to get to the rim for two. That was the plan. I seen a opening, and coach trusted me with the shot, no matter what. Make or miss. I was fortunate enough to get that one to go in.”

Beal put the Wizards up 103-102 with 1:50 left in overtime with a 3-pointer from the corner. Oklahoma City turned the ball over and center Marcin Gortot made them pay with a layup.

Ibaka closed the gap to one point with a putback of guard Reggie Jackson’s missed layup Ariza tried to responded with a jumper, but Durant came up with the blocked shot and was fouled going for the layup. He hit both free throws to put Oklahoma City up 106-105.

Washington got the ball with four seconds left on the clock and trailing by one. It was enough time for Wall to get up a shot, but it was off the mark as the buzzer sounded.

It was the Thunder’s first time ever winning when trailing by 12 or more points in the fourth quarter and having a 10-point deficit with less than four minutes left in regulation. Durant's game-tying three at the end of regulation was his 12th career game-tying shot in the last 24 seconds of a game. It's the most in NBA since start of 2007-08 season.

“There’s nothing wrong with our defense,” an exasperated Washington coach Randy Whitman said. “They made shots. That’s what it boils down to in this league sometimes. We were right there. Trevor Ariza was right there. Give Durant credit.”

Beal led the Wizards with 34 points on 6-of-8 shooting from behind the arc. Ariza added 15 points and five rebounds. Al Harrington came off the bench to post 11 points.

  Durant finished with 33 points, 13 rebounds and six assists. Ibaka scored 25 points to go along with 12 rebounds and three blocked shots. Westbrook added 13 points and four assists before the ejection.

Westbrook would say nothing on the altercation that led to him leaving the game, but he liked the fight he saw from his teammates down the stretch.

“We never gave up,” Westbrook said. “Did a good job of running our stuff and getting the shots we wanted."

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Sports
  • _Y_R3186 Sooners succumb to Longhorns in run-rule shutout

    Oklahoma had its chances. The Sooners put eight runners on base Friday night against Texas, several times with no outs. And stranded every one of them....

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • OU draws even in rout of West Virginia

    As Oklahoma’s players jogged back to the dugout following the top of the first inning against West Virginia, no one appeared overly excited. It was the classic case of masking the emotions....

    April 19, 2014

  • North’s Barrett on track for great stuff

    It was after the guy working the PA at John Jacobs Field Friday afternoon understood The Norman Transcript was in the house when he began singing the praises of Norman North’s Ben Barrett....

    April 19, 2014

  • Sooners advance to Super Six

    BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — Oklahoma, Georgia and LSU advanced to the Super Six of the NCAA women’s gymnastics championships....

    April 19, 2014

  • Woodard powers through

    For most of Friday afternoon, Norman North’s Haley Woodard, the day after notching a goal and an assist against Edmond Santa Fe, was lying down and feeling  sick under the North track and field team’s canopy at John Jacobs Field....

    April 19, 2014

  • Can the Heat flip the switch?

    MIAMI — LeBron James was walking down the hallway that the Miami Heat call “Championship Alley” a few minutes after last season’s NBA Finals, when he decided the time was right to send a message. It wasn’t for his fans....

    April 19, 2014

  • No April, May or June Madness in NBA

    AP National Writer ATLANTA — If the playoff-bound Atlanta Hawks were in any other sport, they might have a glimmer of hope for winning a championship. The NBA? No way....

    April 19, 2014

  • Warriors and Clippers take mutual dislike into playoff series

    LOS ANGELES — As much as the Los Angeles Clippers and Golden State Warriors don’t like each other, they’re a lot alike in some ways....

    April 19, 2014

  • Thunder set to take on unlikely rival in Memphis

    It’s become an unlikely rivalry. There is no reason for Oklahoma City and Memphis to have an ongoing feud, except that they do and the numbers seem to bear it out....

    April 19, 2014

  • OU V Texas Casey sparks Sooners at the plate against Longhorns

    Oklahoma put runners in scoring position all night, but midway through Thursday’s series opener against Texas, the Sooners couldn’t do much with them. Heading into the bottom of the fifth, they had stranded a handful of runners, including ...

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

Facebook