NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Friday, January 4th (All times Eastern)
Philadelphia 76ers (15-18) at Oklahoma City Thunder (24-7), 8 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Oklahoma City Thunder saw their 12-game home winning streak snapped Wednesday night, but they will try to start another one Friday when the road-weary Philadelphia 76ers head to Chesapeake Energy Arena.
The Thunder fell to the Brooklyn Nets 110-93 on Wednesday. The team is still off to the best start in the franchise's history in Oklahoma City, but Thunder fans got to see a first on Wednesday.
Kevin Durant, the third-leading scorer in the NBA, was ejected from his first game in the NBA. After a furious rally to overcome a 23-point deficit, the Thunder fell behind again when the Nets went 25-8 over the final seven minutes of the game.
During that time, when Thunder center Kendrick Perkins was whistled for an offensive foul, Durant lost his mind, received two technical fouls and was tossed.
"I thought it was a bad call," explained Durant. "You get frustrated throughout a game, you show emotion. That's how you can tell you love it."
Durant finished as the Thunder's leading scorer with 27 and Russell Westbrook added 26 points and 10 assists. Serge Ibaka and Kevin Martin both scored in double-digits for the Thunder, who shot 49 percent from the field and 42 from long distance, but allowed Brooklyn to shoot 50 percent from the field and 53 percent from the 3-point line.
The 76ers come into Oklahoma City in game seven of an eight-game road trip. They have gone 2-4 on the trek with wins over the Memphis Grizzlies and Los Angeles Lakers of all teams.
On Wednesday, the Sixers were uncharacteristically sloppy with the basketball in a 95-89 loss to the Phoenix Suns. The Sixers are the third-best team in the NBA at protecting the ball, but surprisingly, own the NBA's individual leader in turnovers.
Jrue Holiday was spectacular with a triple-double against the Suns. He had 15 points, 10 assists and 10 rebounds, but committed a whopping six turnovers, all in the final three quarters.
"I thought he was really trying to force things," said head coach Doug Collins. "We ride Jrue so much. If he gets a little bit off...we just count on him to do so much for us."
Five other Sixers scored in double figures, led by 14 apiece from the resurgent Dorell Wright and Thaddeus Young. Evan Turner, Nick Young and Lavoy Allen also scored in double digits.
The Thunder beat the Sixers on Nov. 24 in Philadelphia, 116-109 in overtime. The Thunder have owned Philly in recent years with seven wins in a row and the 76ers haven't beaten the Thunder in Oklahoma City ever.
01/04 10:37:00 ET