The reason falls anywhere from a lack of a low-post scorer â€” which the Wolves demonstrated quite well with Darko Milicic late in Monday's game how much easier things can be when you have one â€” to vanilla play-calling.
When asked about the team's recent fourth-quarter struggles, Thunder coach Scott Brooks said only that the staff would watch film and figure things out.
â€œThat's part of it in the NBA,â€ Brooks said. â€œIn the fourth quarter, good teams are going to lock you up and increase the intensity.â€
The Wolves, though, are not a good defensive team. They entered the game allowing a league-worst 109.9 points per game.
Monday's problems, as in the two games prior, were mostly on the Thunder.
â€œWe got to start the quarter off right,â€ Durant said. â€œOur energy has to be there. Our mindset has to be that this is winning time. That's when we can break a game open. We got to step on the gas in the fourth quarter.
â€œWe have a drive-and-kick offense. We have a lot of screen plays, pin-down plays. Teams start to pack the paint in on us since we drive the ball so well. We got to take what the defense gives us. We can't really force it too much. Sometimes you really do have to drive it in there and see if you're going to get a foul or get a basket. But we find ways to win. And good teams find ways to win.â€