Thunder 89, Detroit 79
Observations, news and notes from Friday night’s game….
* Two in a row for the first time this season. And against winning teams no less.
* Looking at the schedule, the Thunder could realistically win the next five and be on a seven-game winning streak. Miami at home, at Golden State, at Clippers, New Jersey at home and Memphis at home. OK, I’m getting ahead of myself.
* 79 points were an opponent season-low for the Thunder. 12 fourth-quarter points for the Pistons were also an opponent season-low.
* The Thunder’s defense, as I wrote about for Saturday’s paper, is getting better and better. OKC has allowed opponents to shoot just 44.2 percent over the past seven games and has given up 100 points or more only twice over that span.
* Make that eight sellouts for the Thunder this season.
* So much for Jeff Green breaking out of that slump. He was 2-for-16 with nine points and 14 rebounds tonight. Coach Scott Brooks praised him after the game for having an impact despite his shooting woes.
“I thought he was a big factor in the game,” Brooks said. “And he shot the ball 2-for-a lot. But he made a lot of winning plays. He got big rebounds for us, he played incredible defense, he contested every shot his man took. And that’s what we need, continued effort. You can’t get down on yourself for not making your shots and Jeff did that tonight. And that’s not easy to do for a young player in this league.”
Said Green: “My jump shot is going in and out and I’ve been trying to find other ways to keep myself in the game and it’s been rebounding and hustle. I just got to keep my focus. I know I’m a good shooter. I’m not going to get down on myself.”
* Chris Wilcox wins the staying focused award after scoring 17 points with 11 rebounds despite playing just four minutes in the past four games. After benching him in favor of Nick Collison and recently acquired center Nenad Krstic, Brooks praised Wilcox for his professionalism afterwards.
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