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OKC Thunder: Kevin Durant found his clutch touch, and not a moment too soon

COMMENTARY — Kevin Durant struggled, right up to the minute he put on his cape and once again became Captain Clutch
by Jenni Carlson Published: April 29, 2012

Until he hit the game-winner, he'd hit just 9 of 26 shots from the floor and attempted only six free throws.


“I wasn't frustrated because ... I was getting good looks,” Durant said. “They just weren't falling for me.

“I've got to just keep going.”

That's what he did, contributing in as many ways as possible. Tops among them were his blocks. He swatted four shots, and all of them were essentially layups.

That saved eight points.

And that — in addition to Russell Westbrook's amazing play and Serge Ibaka's stellar play and Kendrick Perkins' defense on Dirk — gave Durant a chance go play hero.

When his number was called on that final play, he didn't shy from it. He took the ball, drove it and shot it.

“Durant made a great shot,” Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle said. “The only other thing we could've done is double team him and get the ball out of his hands.

“We should've done that. That's on me.”

The Mavs know what he can do, after all. He beat them earlier this season with a buzzer-beater.

Captain Clutch did it again Saturday night.

“It's the playoffs, and no matter how it gets done, you've got to do it,” Durant said. “Tonight was one of those nights I had to do it.”

Keep the cape, Captain. The way this series is shaping up, the Thunder may need you to use it again.

by Jenni Carlson
Jenni Carlson, a sports columnist at The Oklahoman since 1999, came by her love of sports honestly. She grew up in a sports-loving family in Kansas. Her dad coached baseball and did color commentary on the radio for the high school football...
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