First quarter, worst quarter
The Thunder never led, playing catch-up the entire game after digging a 27-13 first-quarter hole.
Oklahoma City outscored the Lakers 42-34 in the paint. But in the decisive first quarter the Lakers owned a 14-4 edge inside as the Thunder settled for too many jump shots. When OKC got point-blank shots, Pau Gasol twice blocked Jeff Green shots and Andrew Bynum had a block on Thabo Sefolosha.
The Thunder shot 26.3 percent the first quarter (5-of-19) while the Lakers sizzled early, shooting 54.5 percent (12-of-22) before cooling off the final three quarters.
With both teams struggling the first seven minutes, the Lakers took control when Kobe Bryant scored on a dunk, Derek Fisher on a layup and Pau Gasol on a dunk followed by three 3-pointers from Fisher and Ron Artest late in the quarter to build a double-digit lead.
The Lakers pushed their lead to 17 points (38-21) early in the second quarter, but it was the first quarter that proved to be the difference. The Thunder cut the deficit to six points twice the final 4 1/2 minutes but never recovered from a slow start.
By Mike Baldwin