Oklahoma City Thunder: OKC's promising season cut short

A season that started off so promising, with high hopes and championship dreams, was cut short Wednesday night, derailed by the harsh realities of professional basketball, first an untimely trade and then a tragic injury.
by Darnell Mayberry Published: May 16, 2013

Kevin Durant was the face of it, scoring 21 points on 5-for-21 shooting. His gave it his best, playing all 48 minutes, but his best efforts weren't enough.

“I thought he really wanted to carry his team,” Hollins said.

Without his All-Star sidekick, Durant couldn't do it alone.

The Thunder shot just 36.9 percent and was plagued by the same problems that prevented it from closing out the previous three games.

Oklahoma City turned the ball over 14 times, leading to 22 Grizzlies points, and watched role players struggle to step up in supply additional offense in Westbrook's absence.

“We had a really good season,” Durant said. “It was a joy playing for these guys. It was a joy playing for this great city. We came up short.

“Memphis is a really, really good team, and they made it tough on us every one of these games. I gave it all I had for my team. I left it all out there on the floor. I missed 16 shots, but I kept fighting and I kept being aggressive. That's all I can ask for.”

Zach Randolph led Memphis with a game-high 28 points and 14 rebounds. But he missed a pair of free throws with 11.8 seconds remaining and the Grizzlies nursing a tenuous two-point lead. It left the door open for the Thunder to tie it or win it.

Durant, however, missed a potentially game-tying 17-foot jumper with 4.9 seconds left to play.

“I made a good move,” Durant said. “I pulled up and missed the shot. I was just thinking, ‘Just try to get an open shot … I was able to get a good look. It was just too long.”

Game. Series. Season.


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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