OKLAHOMA CITY —
Reggie Jackson cut the Bucks’ lead to eight with back-to-back layups. But Marquis Daniels responded with a 3-pointer and Gustavo Ayon knocked in a putback to push the advantage back to 13 with less than three minutes left in the contest. They were able to hold the Thunder off the rest of the way.
“I wanted to end the season on a positive note for our guys,” Boylan said. “We’ve worked hard all year. We’ve had our ups and downs. Any time there is a coaching change, it’s an odd season. I wanted our guys to finish the season’s 82 games and have a victory to wrap it up with.”
In limited minutes, Brandon Jennings scored 17 points. Mike Dunleavy added 14 points and Ayon collected 12 rebounds.
Jackson scored a career-high 23 points off the bench for the Thunder (60-22). He also dished out five assists and grabbed six rebounds. Rookie Perry Jones scored 14 points and hauled in nine rebounds.
Russell Westbrook played a total of seven minutes, but he extended his streak to 394 consecutive games played.
Oklahoma City, which raised its Northwest Division Championship banner before the game, played without Kevin Durant. By not playing, Durant handed over his title of NBA scoring champion to New York’s Carmelo Anthony. To surpass Anthony, he needed to score 70 points in the final game.
“It’s something that is never talked about,” Brooks said. “If Kevin, really wanted to win the scoring title, he would have done that many weeks ago. He wouldn’t have been trying to get triple doubles and putting his teammates in position to get easy buckets. He can score 35 points a game if he really wanted to focus on that.”
Even though Oklahoma City’s Durant was unable to continue his streak of scoring titles, he was able to enter another elite group of scorers. By shooting 51 percent from the field, 90.5 percent from the free throw line and 41.6 percent from 3-point range, he joined Reggie Miller, Mark Price, Steve Nash, Dirk Nowitzki and Larry Bird in the 50/40/90 club.
“It’s a goal I set before the season,” Durant said. “And to see it come alive is something I’m really proud of.”
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