Kevin Durant was asked before Friday’s game at Toronto if he is comfortable hearing his name in the same sentence as Michael Jordan so frequently.
The Thunder star’s 34-game streak of scoring 25 points or more is the longest since MJ over the past 50 years. Jordan did it 40 times in the 1986-87season.
Durant broke into a big smile.
“I’m comfortable with it,” a laughing Durant said. “But Jordan has done way more than just score 25 points in however many games. He’s a champion, an MVP, a Finals MVP. He’s done it all. So I’d rather be in that conversation with him. But it’s definitely an honor to be in the same sentence as Michael Jordan. I never want to take that for granted. But I’ve got bigger goals in mind.”
Hours after delivering that response, Durant went out and did something else the league hasn’t seen since Jordan.
He scored 51 points with 12 rebounds and seven assists in the Thunder’s 119-118 double-overtime victory against the Raptors. Jordan was the last player to post those numbers. He did it during the 1992-93 season.
JACKSON STEPS UP IN PLACE OF WESTBROOK
When point guard Russell Westbrook was taken to the locker room midway through the third quarter on Friday, the Thunder needed someone to step up.
Reggie Jackson answered the call.
Jackson scored 25 points with 12 rebounds and three assists. It was his first career double-double. He contributed 21 points, six rebounds and one assist in the second half and overtimes.
“Reggie was outstanding,” said Thunder coach Scott Brooks. “I have confidence in Reggie. I thought he did a better job later in the second half of guarding his guy. And he can, he just has to engage and focus on doing that every time.”
At the end of the first overtime, Jackson also went 4-for-4 from the foul line inside the final 20 seconds. Each trip put the Thunder ahead by three. Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry, however, sent the game into a second overtime with a 27-foot 3-pointer with 7.4 seconds remaining.
Toronto point guard Greivis Vasquez on Durant — “If you got Kevin Durant on your team, you’re safe. He’s like Jesus in this league.”