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Thunder notebook: Doc Rivers praises Kevin Durant

BY MIKE BALDWIN, Staff Writer, Modified: December 5, 2009 at 12:08 am •  Published: December 5, 2009
Halfway through the fourth quarter of a 105-87 blowout loss to the Celtics, Kevin Durant’s night was done. He finished with 36 points.

That was about half of the Thunder’s production. At that point of the game, the rest of the team had scored a combined 38 points.

"He’s going to lead the league in scoring very soon, and he’s going to lead this team to the playoffs very soon,” said Boston coach Doc Rivers. "You can see it coming. He’s really difficult to stop.

"But I will say in the third quarter, Paul (Pierce) did as good a defensive job (on Durant) as I’ve seen in a long time. We challenged him at halftime, and he took it.”

Durant scored only two baskets in the third quarter.

Nenad Krstic missed Friday’s game after suffering a sprained left ankle in Wednesday’s win over the Sixers. Nick Collison, coming off his best game of the season, made his first start.

Collison started 40 games last season but logged only 11 minutes. Plagued by foul trouble, Collison picked up his fourth early in the second half.

"We weren’t able to do what we were trying to do,” Collison said. "Some of that was because of their defensive intensity. It seemed like we couldn’t get into any of our (offensive) stuff because they took it away. We obviously didn’t do well enough defensively, either. It was a frustrating game.”

Thunder coach Scott Brooks said "making the extra pass,” and "sharing the ball” would be critical. Box score from Friday's game


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