BIG WIN, BUT FLAWED
Thunder players agreed Sunday's 108-104 victory over the Los Angeles Clippers game at Staples Center was their biggest road win of the season. OKC was not flawless, as it squandered a 19-point lead late.
“We did so many good things there are a lot of positives to take out of it, but at the same time we have to look at how we lost the lead, even though we know how it happened,” starting guard Thabo Sefolosha said. “We tried to keep our composure. We could have done a better job at that. We really let them get into our head at some points in the game.”
The Lakers' high-water mark this season was 6-5 on Nov. 20. … They are 10-19 on the road and 17-20 against Western Conference teams. … When these teams last met on Jan. 27, the Lakers had arguably their best performance of the season in a 105-96 victory at Staples Center. They shot 55.4 percent from the floor, which actually was better than what they shot at the free-throw line (55.2 percent). … Center Dwight Howard has a bad back, a bad shoulder and frequently a bad attitude, but he's still a bad man, leading the NBA in rebounding (12.0), plus fourth in field-goal percentage (.579) and fifth in blocks (2.31).
*Durant on the passion of Thunder players: “We just let everybody on this team be themselves. We don't try to tell guys, ‘Look, you can't talk here. You're not supposed to do that.' We don't do that. We don't put (limits) on anybody. We want the guys to be themselves. They wouldn't be here if they weren't good guys, first off. They wouldn't be here if they weren't great teammates. They do a great job of putting the team together. They're not just good basketball players, they're great people. I think everybody in this locker room is the same.”
*Kobe Bryant told ESPN.com he saw Serge Ibaka’s below-the-belt hit Sunday on the Los Angeles Clippers’ Blake Griffin. Bryant said he thought some retaliation was in order.
“I probably would have smacked (Ibaka) in the mouth,” Bryant said. “I would have dealt with the pain after.”
Ibaka was not ejected from the game, and the NBA has not said if he will be suspended.