After more than a week off, the Thunder didn't show any rust Monday night against the Los Angeles Lakers.
The Lakers' Metta World Peace was showered with boos, the Thunder's Kendrick Perkins returned and Oklahoma City opened its NBA Western Conference Semifinals series with a 119-90 blowout of the Lakers in Game 1 at Chesapeake Energy Arena.
Russell Westbrook nearly had a triple double, with 27 points, 9 assists and 7 rebounds as the Thunder led by 15 by halftime and eventually handed the Lakers their worst defeat of the season.
The Thunder did it by shooting 53 percent from the field and turning the ball over just four times.
Their previous low turnover total this season was 10.
“We've had four in the first six minutes of the games sometimes,” Thunder coach Scott Brooks said. “We did a great job of taking care of the basketball. That's one of the things that we talked about all year and we've really done a good job of that.”
The Thunder hosts Game 2 at 8:30 p.m. Wednesday.
Thunder fans made their displeasure with World Peace apparent before the game and reminded him of it every time he touched the ball.
It was World Peace's first appearance in Oklahoma City since a vicious elbow to the head of James Harden on April 22 in Los Angeles.
World Peace, formerly known as Ron Artest, was suspended for seven games for the incident while Harden missed the Thunder's last two regular-season games.
When he was introduced before the game, the sold-out crowd of 18,203 greeted World Peace with a loud but short chorus of boos.
During the game, he was booed every time he touched the ball.
Extra police officers were added behind the Lakers bench for the game, and arena workers confiscated signs that were deemed inappropriate.
“We just try to worry about the game once it starts,” World Peace said. “That's their fans. They're not Lakers fans.”
After hitting a pair of 3-pointers in the first 2:30, World Peace finished with 12 points.
Perkins returned from the right hip muscle strain he suffered in the Thunder's first-round clinching win at Dallas on May 5 but left early in the third period and didn't return.
The Thunder didn't need him, at least Monday night.
They dominated from early on and led by as many as 35 late in the third quarter.
On the defensive end, the Thunder forced 15 Lakers turnovers and frustrated Lakers star Kobe Bryant, who finished with 20 points but was just 7 of 18 from the floor.
“Kobe Bryant is one of the best players to ever, ever play this game and all we want to do is make him take some tough shots,” Brooks said. “We did a good job on him, but it's only one game. We need to do the same thing come Wednesday night.”