Thunder Roll Past LeBron-Less Cavs
Kevin Durant scored the final eight points for the Oklahoma City Thunder to answer a late Cleveland run as OKC held on to beat the Cavaliers 103-94 on Thursday night at Chesapeake Arena in Oklahoma City.
The Cavaliers played the game without star forward LeBron James, who sat out the game with soreness in his left knee.
The Thunder took charge of the game in the third quarter, going on a 29-9 run into the fourth quarter to open an 86-66 lead.
Cleveland responded with an 18-4 run to cut the Thunder lead to four at 95-91.
That’s when Durant took over, scoring on a dunk, a fallaway jumper, two free throws, and a tough scoop shot to hold off the Cavs.
Durant finished with 19 points, 6 rebounds, and 5 assists.
Russell Westbrook paced all scorers with 26 points, 7 rebounds, and 8 assists.
Two other Thunder players were in double figures in scoring, with Reggie Jackson scoring 13 points and Anthony Morrow 11, with three 3-pointers.
The Thunder struggled in the first quarter with seven turnovers and went 0-for-8 from three point range.
Cleveland led 26-18 after the first, but the Thunder rallied to tie at 47-47 at halftime, before taking charge in the third quarter.
Kyrie Irving led the Cavs with 20 points, while Kevin Love had a double-double with 18 points and 16 rebounds.
The Thunder improved to 9-13, and won their fourth game in a row, while the Cavs had an eight-game winning streak snapped and fell to 13-8.
OKC is back on the road Friday night to play at Minnesota at 7:00 central time.