Thunder make a stop at New Jersey
The talented Oklahoma City Thunder will attempt to rebound game East Coast road trip tonight at The Rock against the New Jersey Nets.
The Thunder are coming off an inexplicable performance against the hapless Wizards in the nation's capital on Wednesday. John Wall filled the stat sheet with 25 points, eight assists and seven rebounds and Nick Young added 24 points for Washington, which put the brakes on a four-game skid and moved to 2-12 on the season with a 105-102 win.
Kevin Durant had a chance to tie the game at the buzzer with a deep straightaway three-pointer, but it fell harmlessly off the rim.
Russell Westbrook had 36 points and Durant added 33 for the Thunder, who came in with the NBA's best record and had their seven-game winning streak snapped.
"They did a good job of crashing the offensive boards, the 19 offensive boards bothered us and we fouled too many times," Oklahoma City head coach Scott Brooks said.
James Harden had 13 points off the bench for Oklahoma City, which is 6-2 on the road overall but missed out on a chance to give the franchise its best start since the Seattle SuperSonics went 13-2 to open 2004-05.
Off the floor things picked up for the Thunder on Thursday when the team agreed with Westbrook on a five-year, $80 million dollar extension.
The dynamic UCLA product is in his fourth season with the Thunder, who made him the fourth overall pick of the 2008 draft. Westbrook is averaging 20.5 points, 5.5 assists and 5.0 rebounds in 15 games this season.
"We are thrilled to solidify Russell's future with the Thunder," said general manager Sam Presti in a statement. "Since we arrived in Oklahoma City, Russell's work ethic, persistence, character, and involvement in our community have helped us establish the standards that we are committed to on a day-to- day basis. He is a valued member of our organization and we look forward to his continued contributions on and off the floor."
The Nets, meanwhile, opened a three-game homestand by winning their first home game of the season on Wednesday. Deron Williams had 24 points, 10 assists and eight rebounds in that one, leading New Jersey to a 107-100 win over the Warriors.
Rookie MarShon Brooks added 22 points, six assists and eight boards for the Nets, who are just 1-4 as the host this season. Kris Humphries finished with 18 points and 15 rebounds.
"It's good to get the win at home," said Williams, "it's something we desperately needed. If you want to be a good team, a playoff team, you have to protect your home court and we hadn't done a good job of that."
New Jersey will finish its residency against the Bobcats on Sunday.
OKC has won five straight over the Nets. This will be the only time the two clubs will meet in this lockout-shortened season.