Observations, news and notes from Tuesday night’s game……
* Nick Collison said it best after this one…….”It’s disappointing when a team can just kind of go through the motions and beat you like that.”
* As excited as I and I’m sure everyone else was to see this game, it turned out to be a real snoozer.
* It was never closer than 17 in the second half.
* Kevin Durant injured his left forearm tonight when Kobe Bryant accidentally elbowed him on a drive to the rim. He finished the game with a protective pad on it and had the pad wrapped with tape and an arm ban on top of it all. Team officials said it was a bruise and he should be fine.
* That’s about as much damage as Bryant did on this night. His team-high 19 points were far from effortless. He went 6-for-18 from the field and couldn’t get into a rhythm against Thabo Sefolosha.
* Sefolosha blocked Bryant’s shot twice and forced him into an airball on another possession. But he failed to record a steal for only the second time since joining the Thunder.
* Lamar Odom, Pau Gasol and Josh Powell really hurt the Thunder tonight, combining for 56 points and 23 rebounds.
* Thunder turnovers helped the Lakers get off to a 37-20 lead in the first quarter. OKC had five in the first 12 minutes, leading to 10 points.
* Russell Westbrook struggled yet again, going 2 of 11 from the field for 10 points. Think that rookie wall thing has finally caught up to him? Make that 23-for-72 over his past five games. That’s 31.9 percent shooting and a 12.4-point average over that span.
* Nick Collison (10 points, eight rebounds) had a solid game again, the only bright spot for the Thunder from my point of view.
* Suddenly, after the past two games, there are some serious questions Thunder coach Scott Brooks needs to answer about why Earl Watson can’t even get on the court at this point. The Thunder led by as many as 32 against Minnesota on Sunday and Watson still ended up with the DNP. The Lakers were up by as many as 24 in this one and the same DNP sits adjacent his name tonight.
* At one point late in the first half, when Westbrook picked up his third foul with 3:28 left in the second quarter, Brooks inserted Collison rather than Watson. It gave the Thunder a lineup of Sefolosha, Green, Durant, Collison and Krstic. Not one point guard. Chucky Atkins has started the second quarter and got a breather with 6:07 left. He checked back in for Collison with 1:21 remaining in the half. But the Lakers went on a 5-2 run while the Thunder was without a point guard on the floor and ended the quarter on a 11-2 run to take the 62-38 halftime lead.