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For once, big shot goes OKC Thunder’s way

BY DARNELL MAYBERRY Modified: January 23, 2009 at 12:44 am •  Published: January 23, 2009
LOS ANGELES — The scene played out much like it has so many times this season.

On the road. Down by one. 1.6 seconds remaining.

Only this time, it was the Thunder that walked out winners, stealing a 122-121 victory over Golden State and sending an Oracle Arena crowd home as stunned as the Ford Center faithful has been three times this season.

Jeff Green’s 16-foot bank shot as time expired against the Warriors on Wednesday night could hold much more significance than the first game-winner in Thunder history and of Green’s young career.

Green’s back-breaking buzzer-beater could go down as the shot that changed a season.

The Thunder can now walk into tonight’s game against the injury-ravaged Los Angeles Clippers with confidence. But in a larger scope, Green’s shot served as a boost to morale and as a symbol that everything the Thunder has worked on over the past month is paying off.

"It’s good for us to hit a game-winner,” said Thunder coach Scott Brooks. "We’ve had a couple of those against us in our building... He obviously hit a big shot. It was an opportunity for our guys to continue to get better at closing out games.”

The Thunder got it right Wednesday after fumbling away opportunities throughout the first 2


There was the botched lob pass to Green in Detroit that could have sent the game into overtime after Allen Iverson’s go-ahead fadeaway with 0.2 seconds left. There were the two failed attempts inside the final minute in New Jersey — a Kevin Durant missed 21-footer and another botched lob play, this time intended for Russell Westbrook with 0.

BLOG: Thunder rumblings

Thunder at Clippers
→When: 9:30 tonight

→Where: Staples Center, Los Angeles

→TV: FSOK (Cox 37)

→Radio: WWLS-AM 640, FM 98.1

Coming Sunday
Thunder standout Kevin Durant is an NBA All-Star in the making. How long will it take Durant to become one of the elite?

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