Boards Break Thunder in Loss to the Wizards

Russell Westbrook #0 of the Oklahoma City Thunder handles the ball during the first half of the NBA game against the Phoenix Suns at Talking Stick Resort Arena on March 3, 2017 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

The Thunder entered Sunday looking to pull off their third straight win as they faced off with former Thunder head coach Scott Brooks’ Wizards.

The Thunder playing their fifth game in eight days didn’t seem to show early on as the Thunder built a nine point lead with a Russell Westbrook three. Westbrook would notch his 12th triple-double of the season.

However, the Wizards would pull even in the second quarter. OKC struggled to his shots and defend. Jerami Grant hit an acrobatic and one layup but the Thunder still trailed by four at the half. Grant finished with 17 points.

It’s no secret OKC has been the best third quarter team in basketball and it showed. The Thunder started the third on a quick eight-zero run which was highlighted by a Paul George three. George finished with 20 points.

In fact, the Thunder had a lead when Russell Westbrook hit an impressive and one while landing on Bradley Beal. Westbrook had 22 points, 15 rebounds and 13 assists.

Then the bottom fell out.

Chasson Randle hit a layup, then he was fouled by Jerami Grant shooting a three. Then Otto Porter, Jr. drilled a three from the corner which gave the Wizards a 80-69 lead.

But every time the Thunder tried to mount a comeback, the offensive rebounds reared their ugly head. Bradley Beal hit a three to go up 90-86. OKC trailed by 17 when Washington pulled down not one, but two offensive rebounds on one possession which was capped off by Jeff Green hitting a three. It was all academic after that. The former Thunder forward dropped 16 on his old team. Washington out rebounded OKC 16-7 on the offensive glass. They out rebounded them 55-41 as a whole.

The Wizards, who had lost their last eight games on the road, picked up their first ever win in OKC 116-98.

Next up for the Thunder, they look to bounce back against the Minnesota Timberwolves inside The Peake. The Wolves fired head coach Tom Thibodeau Sunday after a win over the Lakers.

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