The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

November 6, 2013

Durant, Westbrook lead Thunder past Mavs


Associated Press

OKLAHOMA CITY —  Kevin Durant had 23 points and 10 assists, and Russell Westbrook scored 22 points as Oklahoma City pulled away in the second half for a 107-93 victory over Dallas on Wednesday night.

Serge Ibaka added 17 points and 13 rebounds for the Thunder (3-1), who won their second straight game following Westbrook’s return from two offseason knee surgeries.

Jeremy Lamb added 13 points for Oklahoma City, which has won 11 straight games against the Mavericks, including the playoffs. The last loss for the Thunder against Dallas was on Jan. 2, 2012.

Monta Ellis led the Mavericks (3-2), who were playing their second game in two nights, with 20 points. Jae Crowder and Shawn Marion added 17 each, while Dirk Nowitzki finished with 16.

After leading by six points at halftime, Oklahoma City went a 6-0 run to open the third quarter and take a 63-51 lead on Serge Ibaka’s putback of a miss by Westbrook.

The Thunder extended the lead to as many as 15 points later in the quarter, keeping its lead in double figures throughout the fourth.

It was Westbrook who provided several of the game’s biggest highlights, putting to rest any doubt about the health of his knee while finishing 10 of 20 from the field. The point guard was 5 of 16 in his first game back, a win over Phoenix, but he took control early against the Mavericks — soaring through the lane for two one-handed highlight dunks.

Westbrook wasted little time in showing there are no ill effects in his second game back after his most recent knee surgery, scoring eight of Oklahoma City’s first 11 points.

The point guard had 13 points at halftime, while Durant led the Thunder with 15 points and five assists at halftime.

Dallas led by as many as five points in the first quarter, taking a 20-15 lead after a drive by Ellis. Nowitzki put the Mavericks up 29-26 with a 3-pointer late in the first quarter, one of six 3-pointers Dallas hit in the first half.

After DeJuan Blair tied the game at 39-39 for the Mavericks midway through the second quarter, Oklahoma City went on a 7-0 run — and it was capped by an unexpected source.

Ahead 42-39, Thunder center Steven Adams dunked off an assist by Durant. The rookie followed with a steal on the other end, throwing an outlet pass to a streaking Westbrook , who finished the break with a thundering one-handed dunk that put Oklahoma City up 46-39.

Ibaka gave the Thunder their largest lead of the half with a jumper to go up 51-43 before settling for a 57-51 halftime lead.