Ibaka scores 25, Thunder beat Pistons 105-94
"He's real athletic. Me, partially," a humble Monroe said. "I can find him. When you have two guys like that, you have two big men guarding us and you know how they get mixed up sometimes with picks and stuff like that. I was able to find him a couple of times with them mixed up and got a couple easy buckets."
The Pistons couldn't sustain it, though, as Oklahoma City inched away with Durant on the bench. He returned just before Drummond hit a free throw, and the Thunder scored the next nine points after that to take control for good.
Kevin Martin added 16 points off the bench and Eric Maynor had 13, even getting a late call at the end of the game to replace the struggling Westbrook.
Westbrook ended up with 10 points and six assists but continued to struggle with his shot, dropping to 20 for 62 (32 percent) in his last four games. He left the locker room without speaking to reporters.
Monroe followed his first career triple-double with 14 points, 10 rebounds and six assists.
A year after trailing by 32 in the first half of a blowout in their only visit to Oklahoma City, the Pistons were able to keep it close by limiting Durant and Westbrook to slow starts.
Westbrook missed his first six shots and didn't score until converting a putback with 4:38 left before halftime during an 8-0 run that finally gave the Thunder a little bit of a cushion at 44-35.
Frank called his team's defense and rebounding "disturbing" prior to the game, and he was pleased the Pistons finished with more rebounds than an opponent for the first time this season. They also had 48-38 advantage in points in the paint, a 19-11 edge on second-chance points and even outscored the athletic Thunder on the fast break.
"We've just got to kind of put it all together and keep building," Frank said.
NOTES: Thunder reserve Hasheem Thabeet sat out with a sprained left ankle. ... Aerosmith front man Steven Tyler, still in town after playing at the arena the night before, was presented with a personalized Oklahoma City alternate jersey during a first-quarter timeout. ... Martin, who started the season 14 for 22 (64 percent) on 3-pointers, was 2 for 9 from behind the arc. ... The Pistons finish a six-game road trip Saturday at Houston before a rematch against the Thunder on Monday in Detroit.