The Los Angeles Clippers needed only the equivalent of one quarter to turn a 15-point deficit into a 15-point advantage, using what has emerged as a disturbing trend against the Thunder before cruising to a 108-88 win on Wednesday night at the Ford Center.
The Thunder fell to 1-11, bumping its losing streak to nine games, largely because it couldn’t take care of the basketball.
Oklahoma City finished with a season-high 21 turnovers compared to only 16 assists.
After taking a 50-35 lead with 3:08 remaining in the first half, the Thunder’s advantage quickly dwindled to three at the half when it turned the ball over four times to end the period.
The Clippers then raced to a 28-10 run in the third quarter, aided by a six-minute stretch midway through the period that saw the Thunder go 0-for-6 from the field with four turnovers.
A bad pass by Chris Wilcox, who returned from a five-game absence, led to a Cuttino Mobley steal and layup at the other end to push the Clippers’ lead to 77-62 with 2:53 remaining in the third quarter. Los Angeles would lead by as many as 25 in the fourth.
"It’s very frustrating to play well for spurts and kind of fall to the side the rest of the game,” said Joe Smith. "We’ve got to come together. It’s not about one individual or two separate people or this group or that group. We got to come together and be able to find a way to do it with everyone as a whole instead of just trying to individually put the team on our back.
"We have good enough talent on this team that if we come together and play the right way, we should be able to win games.