The score was 43-17 with 8 1/2 minutes left in the second quarter of Game 2 on Wednesday night.
The Oklahoma City Thunder was halfway to clinching this opening-round playoff series, while the Denver Nuggets were digging a hole halfway to China.
The Nuggets clawed their way back, but never got closer than 10 points and lost 106-89.
“The hole was just too big,” Denver coach George Karl admitted afterward.
A sellout crowd of 18,203 donned blue T-shirts inside Oklahoma City Arena and watched OKC take a 2-0 lead in this best-of-seven series that moves to the Pepsi Center in Denver for Game 3 on Saturday at 9 p.m.
Including the last two regular-season meetings, the Thunder has beaten the Nuggets four straight times in the last 16 days, and from the outset Wednesday night, there was little doubt.
“They were totally in control,” Karl said. “They were energized. They were more physical. They were quicker, probably smarter.”
The NBA's highest-scoring team this season, Denver had managed just 10 points with less than one minute left in the first quarter.
“They came out more aggressive than us, with more intensity than us. Just everything, more than us,” Nuggets forward Danilo Gallinari said. “There is not a lot of things I can say.”
The Thunder shot just 43.9 percent from the field, but held Denver to 39.1-percent shooting.
“Our guys were missing shots they can make,” said reserve forward Al Harrington, who had 15 points and shot 6 for 9 from the field. “Sometimes you slip at the wrong time.”
OKC dominated the boards 54-31, including 17-5 on the offensive end. The Thunder outscored Denver 24-10 on second-chance points.
Young and energetic, OKC has become a confident group.
“I guess the best thing to fix that is winning, so I we have to find a way to win Game 3 back in Denver,” Harrington said.
In Game 1, Kevin Durant exploded for 41 points and Russell Westbrook added 31 for the Thunder.
In Game 2, both finished with far more reasonable totals, but had much more support from teammates.
Durant had 23 points, five rebounds and five assists, while Westbrook had 21 points, seven assists and four rebounds, but also seven turnovers.
“We were doing basically the same thing,” Gallinari said of trying to defend Durant. “We were just trying to be aggressive on him and tried to not give him freedom to play or to think.”
Denver forward Wilson Chandler said the difference in Durant and Westbrook was “they shared the ball and everybody made shots. They distributed it somewhere.”
The series moves to Denver for two straight games. The Nuggets now have a chance to hold serve at home, but that doesn't guarantee the series will be 2-2 headed back to OKC next Wednesday.
“It's more than that (having home court),” Chandler said. “We still got to come out and play. They beat us at home during the regular season.”
The Nuggets are 33-8 at home this season.
“I like our chances in Denver,” Harrington said. “We just need to get back home. I'm excited to get back home, get some home cooking and kind of get our feel back.”
Could one Nuggets victory bring a halt to the Thunder's confidence?
“I don't know if it would end it, but it would definitely help,” Chandler said. “The momentum will be on our side.”
In NBA playoff history, teams with a 2-0 lead have won the series 94 percent of the time, but the Nuggets haven't surrendered yet.
“A lot of basketball to play,” Gallinari said.