Twenty-four hours after picking up his 14th technical foul of the season at Cleveland, forward Kevin Durant was whistled for his 15th at Toronto on Friday night.
The Thunder star is now just one technical foul away from receiving an automatic one-game suspension.
Durant was called for Friday’s technical foul with 27.3 seconds remaining in the second quarter, when referee David Jones ruled that Durant pushed Raptors forward Tyler Hansbrough. Video replay, however, shows only a light shove by Durant as he tries to separate himself after the two got tangled while jockeying for position on a potential rebound.
On Thursday, Durant was hit with a technical with 16.9 seconds remaining in the first quarter when he stared down a Cavs player following a dunk. The action perhaps fell under the league’s taunting restrictions. But while Durant said he needs to be more careful the rest of the season, he also plans on appealing Thursday’s technical.
“I’m going to try to get that tech rescinded,” Durant said of Thursday’s tech. “I was just reacting to the play that I made and (the ref) T’d me up. So hopefully we get that thing rescinded. But I just got to be more cautious.”
Thunder coach Scott Brooks said Durant needs to keep his emotions in check better when things are beyond his control.
“He has to make sure we take care of that,” Brooks said. “That’s part of the game. Emotions are part of the game. But I think he’s well-aware of it. We have to make sure that he just stays within the game and not let the things that he can’t control affect him. But he’s done a good job all year. It’s a couple lately that he has to make sure that he holds himself back.”
LAMB STAYING READY
After watching guard Jeremy Lamb turn in an encouraging performance against the Cavs on Thursday, Brooks said the best thing Lamb can do for himself at this point is to stay ready.
Lamb, who has fallen out of the rotation since the arrival of Caron Butler, played 26 minutes Thursday, the most since Feb. 11 at Portland. He scored 10 points in the win, snapping a 12-game streak of scoring fewer than 10 points.
“I like what he did,” Brooks said. “We talk about this as a group: stay ready. He hasn’t played as many minutes as he had early in the season. But it’s not about he’s going to be put on the shelf and he’s not going to play. He has to stay ready. I talked to him about five or six days ago. He’s going to get an opportunity, and it’s going to be a 10 or 12 minute stretch.”
Lamb didn't check in until the final 20.7 seconds of overtime Friday, checking in only after Butler was whistled for his sixth foul. Butler played 35 minutes and scored four points on 1-for-9 shooting.
Durant scored 51 points in Friday’s 119-118 win. It was second 50-point game this season and his 12th game with more than 40 points. He’s now scored at least 40 three times in the month of March...Jackson recorded his first career double-double with 25 points and 12 rebounds. After the game, he walked off the court with the game ball...Thunder part owner Aubrey McClendon and his wife, Katie, attended Friday’s game...Patrick Chan, a silver medalist at the 2014 Sochi Olympics and Toronto native, attended Friday’s game...The Thunder improved to 3-0 this season in overtime games.