News » Thunder can clap after ending long slide

Thunder can clap after ending long slide

Thunder can clap after ending long slide
Kevin Durant and the Oklahoma City Thunder snapped a long losing streak with a timely game against the Memphis Grizzlies. Durant scored 30 points, and Jeff Green added 22 to help the Thunder end its slide at 14 games with a 111-103 victory Saturday.

The victory was Oklahoma City's first on the road and second of the season.

"Everybody came into the locker room and we were all smiles," Durant said. "That's what we need. We've been down after some tough losses." Interim coach Scott Brooks agreed: "We have all hung in there together. It hasn't been the easiest ride."

Memphis, meanwhile, has lost a six in a row and 10 of its past 11 games. "Obviously, it was a tough loss," Coach Marc Iavaroni said. "They lost 14 in a row, and they were hungry. We were hungry. They did a great job in the fourth quarter."

Rockets 103, Spurs 84: Seldom-used reserve Luther Head scored 21 points in place of the injured Tracy McGrady and Houston used balanced scoring to beat San Antonio. The Rockets saw all five starts score in double figures, and they finished with 22 assists. "We need ball movement," Rafer Alston, who added 16 points, said, "and the ball was hopping tonight."

Tim Duncan shook off a bad start to score 17 points for the Spurs, who had held their previous 11 opponents below 100 points. Tony Parker had 15 points and seven assists in his first start since missing nine games with a sprained ankle.

Magic 110, Pacers 96: Dwight Howard came home from the United States' gold-medal triumph in Beijing determined to be a bigger force for Orlando, and he certainly was in this one. Howard had 32 points, 21 rebounds and four blocked shots against Indiana, which tried everything but shackles against him. "I have the word 'dominating' written all over my house and I talk about it a lot before every game," Howard said. "I think about dominating the whole game. I've got to have that type of mentality every night for our team to be successful."

Celtics 89, Bobcats 84: With two NBA All-Stars as teammates, Paul Pierce knows he doesn't have to shoulder the scoring load every game. But Pierce was ready when Coach Doc Rivers called on him against Charlotte. Pierce scored 19 points to lead six Boston players in double figures as the Celtics held off the Bobcats' fourth-quarter rally to win their eighth in a row. "I never think about my shots," said Pierce, who had eight points in the final quarter. "That's the beauty of this team, the sacrifice each one of us makes."

Nuggets 106, Timberwolves 97: Chauncey Billups scored 27 points in three quarters, Carmelo Anthony added 25 points and 10 rebounds, and Denver used a 14-0 run midway through the third quarter to pull away. "That was just awesome, and we never looked back," Billups said.

Cavaliers 97, Bucks 85: LeBron James expects his team to look to him late in close games, and the Cavaliers certainly did in this one. He scored 11 straight points for Cleveland late in the fourth quarter and finished with 32 to help vanquish Milwaukee.

James struggled for much of the night, going without a basket for more than 15 minutes in the second half before showing the way. "I have done it in the past," James said, "and I'm going to continue to do it in the future. And tonight was one of those games when they looked at me, and I took it upon myself to do that."

Clippers 97, Heat 96: Zach Randolph and Al Thornton each scored 27 points and Baron Davis, playing despite a stomach virus, had 15 points and nine assists to lead Los Angeles.

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Added: November 30, 2008


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