NBA Preview from The Sports Network|
Friday, November 23rd
(All times eastern)
Oklahoma City Thunder (9-3) at Boston Celtics (6-6), 7:30 p.m.
(Sports Network) - Three-time scoring champion Kevin Durant will lead the
Oklahoma City Thunder on the road for back-to-back games, starting with
Friday's showdown with the Boston Celtics at TD Garden.
Durant is second in the NBA in scoring with 25.4 ppg and scored a season-high
35 points in Wednesday's 117-111 overtime win versus the Los Angeles Clippers.
Durant also made 19 of 21 foul shots, grabbed six rebounds and handed out five
assists for the Thunder, who have won three straight and eight of nine games.
"It was like a playoff game in November. Everybody laid it all on the line
tonight," Thunder coach Scott Brooks said. "We did a really good job
defensively and that's not an easy thing to do against them."
Russell Westbrook and Kevin Martin registered 23 and 20 points, respectively,
for Oklahoma City, which is one win away from becoming the first team in the
NBA with 10 victories and improved to 6-0 on the season when having five-or-
more players score in double figures.
Serge Ibaka scored 15 points and added 12 rebounds, and Hasheem Thabeet
recorded 10 points in a reserve role.
Oklahoma City, which is second in the NBA with 103.0 ppg, has won three in a
row on the road and will visit Philadelphia Saturday night.
Meanwhile, the Celtics have dropped two straight and three of four games since
winning three in a row.
Boston suffered a 112-100 loss to San Antonio Wednesday, as Rajon Rondo
finished with 22 points and 15 assists. Paul Pierce scored 19 points for the
Celtics, who shot 53.2 percent and got 16 points out of Brandon Bass.
"We were right there because nobody could stop anybody on either team,"
Celtics coach Doc Rivers said. "We shot 53 percent so the reason we were there
is because our offense allowed us to stay there. But to me, that was fool's
gold, because the way we were playing defense you're not going to get a stop,
you're not going to win a game."
Kevin Garnett had 14 points and Jason Terry notched 12 for Boston. Rondo has
dished out 10 or more assists in 35 straight games -- the longest stretch
since John Stockton's 37-game run from Feb. 27, 1989 - Nov. 29, 1989. Magic
Johnson holds the record at 46 games from April 13, 1983 - Feb. 28, 1984.
The Celtics dropped both meetings with the Thunder a season ago and is
unbeaten in the past three contests in this series. The Thunder have won three
in a row in Beantown.
11/23 10:46:36 ET