Oklahoma City Thunder: Memphis takes 3-2 series lead, wins in OT

A slow start and more struggles in the final minute are the reasons the Thunder is now staring at a 3-2 series deficit.
by Darnell Mayberry Published: April 30, 2014

After Grizzlies forward Mike Miller missed a late 3-pointer, the Thunder had one final chance to win with 2.9 seconds remaining. Durant hauled in an inbound pass from Thabo Sefolosha but settled for a 28-footer on a catch-and-shoot.

He missed.

The rebound fell into the hands of Ibaka, but his putback was ruled no good after replay showed that it left his hands a half a second after the final buzzer.

“It looked good when it left my hands,” Durant said of his final attempt. “And Serge’s tip was just a half a second late. But we just got to move on.”

Brooks said he left the decision up to Durant.

“He has opportunities to catch and drive...but I give KD that decision to make a play,” Brooks said. “It was a tough shot. No question. It was a tough shot.”

And another tough break in crunch time.

In Game 2, the Thunder suffered a 111-105 overtime loss when, in the final 30 seconds, Ibaka traveled and Durant missed two 3-pointers.

In Game 3, Durant missed a questionable off-balanced 3-point at the end of regulation and Westbrook and Durant both fired ill-advised 3-pointers with the Thunder down just three with more than 20 seconds showing on the game clock. The Thunder walked out of that one on the wrong side of a 98-95 decision.

“A couple of plays here or there could have went our way,” Brooks said of Game 5.

Instead, the Grizzlies, staying true to their grit-and-grind philosophy, stole them.

They’ve now done it twice in Oklahoma City.

“We’re a team that’s able to bounce back from adversity,” said Grizzlies guard Mike Conley “It just says a lot about the resiliency of this team and the focus of it.”

Now, the Thunder, on the brink of what would be an alarming first-round exit, must find a way to get another one in Memphis, inside the rowdy arena affectionately nicknamed “The Grind House.”

“We got to impose our will from the beginning of the game,” Durant said.

by Darnell Mayberry
OKC Thunder Senior Reporter
Darnell Mayberry grew up in Langston, Okla. and is now in his third stint in the Sooner state. After a year and a half at Bishop McGuinness High, he finished his prep years in Falls Church, Va., before graduating from Norfolk State University in...
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