San Antonio’s reserves outscored Oklahoma City’s 51-5, which told the story of how Durant and Westbrook received little help in this series. Brooks shortened his rotation, plying only seven players more than six minutes, but Fisher was the only Thunder reserve to chip in as a scorer.
Westbrook scored a game-high 34 points with seven rebounds, eight assists and six steals in 44 minutes. Durant added 31 points, 14 rebounds, two assists and three blocked shots. Reggie Jackson (21 points) and Serge Ibaka (16 points) were the only other Thunder players that scored.
Diaw paced the Spurs with 26 points off the bench, and San Antonio survived foot soreness to Tony Parker that kept the Spurs’ starting point guard out for the entire second half. Even without him, the Spurs outscored the Thunder 37-20 in the third period, turning a seven-point halftime deficit into a 10-point lead entering the final period.
The Spurs gobbled up 16 offensive rebounds, which helped them outscore the Thunder 22-8 in second-chance points.
San Antonio now moves on to face Miami in a rematch of last year’s NBA Finals.
For the Thunder, it’s the second straight season that ended short of the NBA Finals after Oklahoma City made its Finals debut in 2012.
The disappointing finish led to questions about whether this season was a success.
“Absolutely,” Brooks said. “It’s hard to win a championship...There’s only one team that stands every year…We came up six games short.”