Oklahoma City Thunder: Kevin Durant's ejection caps OKC's frustrating loss to Brooklyn Nets

Oklahoma City started slow, finished poorly and, ultimately, let frustration boil over, all of which allowed the Brooklyn Nets to blindside the Thunder with an unexpected yet thorough 110-93 thumping.
by Darnell Mayberry Published: January 2, 2013

The most frustrating night of Thunder basketball this season came complete with the first ejection of Kevin Durant's career.

You read that right. Kevin Durant got ejected.

It was that kind of night Wednesday inside Chesapeake Energy Arena.

Oklahoma City started slow, finished poorly and, ultimately, let frustration boil over, all of which allowed the Brooklyn Nets to blindside the Thunder with an unexpected yet thorough 110-93 thumping.

The loss was the Thunder's worst defeat at home since suffering a 21-point drubbing at the hands of Utah on Halloween 2010. The Nets also snapped the Thunder's league-best 12-game home winning streak and dropped OKC to 24-7 one day after it had regained the league's best record.

“They picked us apart,” Durant said.

The lasting image of this long night came when Durant angrily and uncharacteristically barked at referee Dan Crawford and repeatedly waved him off while disputing what Durant perceived to be a no-call with 1:57 left to play. Crawford called a technical foul on Durant for his initial reaction, and then he slapped the three-time scoring champ with a second technical foul, which warrants an automatic ejection, seconds later when Durant continued his expressive protest.

“I said it was a bad call,” Durant said when asked what he said to get tossed. “They got a quick trigger now on techs.

“I think I'm allowed to be frustrated, especially in this league (that's) full of ups and downs. Players are allowed to be frustrated. It is what it is. (I'll) move on from it.”

The entire team was forced to fight frustration in this one.

The Nets, who had been playing such mediocre ball this season that they fired coach Avery Johnson last week, walked into town and torched the Thunder in all respects. Brooklyn (17-15) shot 50 percent from the field, made nine of 17 3-pointers and connected on 25 of 29 free throws.

In the game's first eight minutes, the Nets led 27-11, a margin that would get worse before it got better.

“We did not have our normal defensive presence in the first quarter and they made us pay for it,” said Nick Collison.

The Thunder trailed by as many as 23 and never led after relinquishing a 1-0 lead 50 seconds into the game.

Nets guard Joe Johnson did the bulk of Brooklyn's damage, scoring 20 of his game-high 33 points in the first half and 10 in the fourth quarter to keep a charging OKC squad at bay. Nets center Brook Lopez, who missed the first meeting between these teams, added 25 points on a barrage of mid-range jumpers and drives to the rim. Point guard Deron Williams, meanwhile, orchestrated his team's offense brilliantly, scoring 19 points with 13 assists and only two turnovers.

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by Darnell Mayberry
OKC Thunder Senior Reporter
Darnell Mayberry grew up in Langston, Okla. and is now in his third stint in the Sooner state. After a year and a half at Bishop McGuinness High, he finished his prep years in Falls Church, Va., before graduating from Norfolk State University in...
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