The pictures didn't show a breakdown in Xs and Os or execution, or even one player taking more shots than another certain player. The real culprit was clear. “We didn't play hard enough to win,” said Nick Collison. “We didn't play fast enough and we didn't have enough energy. It was really pretty bad.”
One night later, the Thunder made amends, steamrolling the Charlotte Bobcats 122-95 inside Chesapeake Energy Arena.
The Bobcats came to town at the bottom of the league in the standings and fell to 5-34. But this time, the Thunder didn't take an inferior opponent lightly.
After being unable to lead the Cavs by more than five points, the Thunder jumped on the Bobcats early, taking an 18-point halftime lead before going ahead by as many as 31 and cruising to its largest margin of victory this season.
“One of the strengths of our guys is always looking forward to the next game after a loss,” said Thunder coach Scott Brooks said. “I'm proud of the guys tonight. They came out and played with a lot of energy.”
Oklahoma City moved to 8-1 after a loss and 18-2 at home.
The Thunder blew open the game with a 12-0 run over a three-minute stretch in the second quarter. OKC turned a three-point lead into a 15-point advantage.
Kevin Durant, with seven points, and James Harden, with five points, scored all 12 points in the surge. Most impressive was how the Thunder shared the ball during that game-changing spurt. All five made field goals by Durant and Harden came on assists by four different players — Harden, Reggie Jackson, Nick Collison, and Russell Westbrook.
“We moved the basketball,” Durant said. “We executed. Everybody touched it and we got great shots. That's what we need to do for us to win.”
The Thunder tallied a season-high 27 assists, with six players dishing out at least two helpers. Eight Thunder players had at least one assist, which made the game easy and helped the Thunder shoot a season-high 63 percent.Saturday's box score: Thunder 122, Bobcats 95