ANOTHER THUNDER-MAVS THRILLER?
Each of the first two games between the Thunder and Mavs needed overtime to be decided. Oklahoma City prevailed in both, winning by six points inside Chesapeake Energy Arena on Dec. 27 and three points at American Airlines Center on Jan. 18.
Round three of what is shaping up to be a slugfest of a four-game season series is Monday at 7 p.m.
“We always play each other tough,” Brooks said. “It's very physical. They challenge us. We challenge them. Nobody backs down. It's always a great game.”
Durant scored a career-high 52 points against the Mavs in the last meeting and is averaging 46 points and 8.5 rebounds in the two games against Dallas.
Mavs point guard Darren Collison has averaged 23.5 points against the Thunder this season and hit an improbable, one-handed shot to force overtime in the first meeting.
“They matchup well with us, so we're going to have to tighten up some things from (the Cleveland game),” said Kevin Martin. “We're going in playing another veteran team that knows how to win, even though their record doesn't show it. We just got to get back on track.”
Thabo Sefolosha on being forced to sit while Cavs guard Kyrie Irving erupted in the fourth quarter Saturday — “Ask coach. That was his decision. And I'm perfectly fine with it. I understand in the heat of the moment you've got to make some decisions, and that's the decision he made. So I'm perfectly fine with it. Did I want to be out there? Of course I wanted to. I always want to be on the court. But coach made the decision and that's the way the game went.”
BY DARNELL MAYBERRY