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article imageNBA: Thunder keeps win streak alive with 95-75 win over Cavs

By Kristofor Molson     Mar 14, 2011 in Sports
Cleveland - The Thunder have been rolling without their new acquisitions Kendrick Perkins or Nate Robinson. Robinson had arthroscopic surgery on his right knee, and Perkins is still having knee trouble but was running full court sprints before todays game.
The Oklahoma City Thunder (43-23) are sitting in the fourth spot in the Western Conference took on the Cleveland Cavaliers (12-53). The Thunder at one point was on the verge of being able to catch, and battle the Los Angeles Lakers (47-20) for the third spot but hit some trouble. They lost four of their last eleven games which included a 90-87 loss to the Lakers.
The Thunder jumped out to a 11-5 run that went to 13-5 when Durant hit a 19-foot jumper. The Cavs got the lead down to four on a Gibson 3-pointer and a layup that had OKC call a timeout with the score 17-13. OKC went on a 9-0 run to push their lead to 13 before Ramon Sessions (4 points) scored on a 1 of 2 free-throws with a minute left in the quarter. Durant had a three point play that closed out the quarter with a 29-14 lead.
Harden and Cook hit back to back 3-pointers to make the score 35-18 early in the second quarter. The Thunder continued to build on their lead as Maynor hit a 3-pointer at the eight minute mark to make it a 40-21 lead after Manny Harris (6 points) of the Cavs made a 3-pointer of his own.
The Cavs tried to cut the lead down a little with a 3-pointer from Gibson with six minutes left in the half. The Cavs got the lead down to 13 points and OKC called a timeout. OKC went cold over the final three minutes of the half as only Westbrook made a layup. Cleveland had a 7-2 run that was capped off with a Parker 3-pointer at the buzzer to make the score 50-38 going into the half.
Russell Westbrook scored 20 points to lead the game and the Thunder. Kevin Durant added 19 points, and Nazr Mohammed scored 11 points. Serge Ibaka did not score big with only eight points, but 14 rebounds and seven blocks for the Thunder.
Daequan Cook scored eight points and Eric Maynor added five points with eight assists. The real helper off the bench was James Harden with 16 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists and 4 steals.
Samardo Samuels lead the starters with 10 points and 10 rebounds, but Daniel Gibson lead the team with 13 points going 2-3 from behind the arc. J.J. Hickson had a big game on the boards with 15 rebounds, but could only muster eight points. Anthony Parker was the only other starter closer to double-digits with nine points.
Both teams traded baskets back and forth until Westbrook powered toward the basket and smashed in a vicious dunk. It looked as if he was going to just lay it up, but he double-pumped and flushed it. He posterized three or four Cavs while leaving his-self and his teammates in amazement.
The Thunder pushed their lead to 67-51 behind Westbrook who scored ten straight points on five straight layups, starting his own 10-6 run. Durant then gave the Thunder an 18 point lead on a jumper, and then made it a 20 point lead on pair of free-throws.
Westbrook and Durant combined for 23 of Thunder’s 25 points in the third quarter.
Harden opened the final period with a 3-pointer as the Thunder went on a 15-6 run that was finished with another Harden 3-pointer and a Cavs’ timeout. The score was 90-64 with less than five minutes left because Ryan Hollins (6 points) made a pair of free-throws.
The Cavs finished the game with a 13-5 run, but the damage was already done as the two All-Stars Durant and Westbrook rested on the bench. They spent the entire fourth quarter on the bench relaxing and laughing as the game got out of hand early.
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