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Thabo Sefolosha smothers LA

By Darnell Mayberry, Staff Writer, Modified: March 27, 2010 at 12:16 am •  Published: March 27, 2010

/> The star of the game had already skipped out of the Thunder’s locker room by the time media members entered. When asked whether Sefolosha frustrated him, though, an obviously dejected Bryant mumbled, "Sure.”

"Thabo has changed the culture of our team,” said Thunder coach Scott Brooks. "We have to play defense every night, and Thabo is an inspirational leader on our team on the defensive end.”

Oklahoma City held Los Angeles to 34 points in the half, a new opponent season-low, and hampered the Lakers into their lowest scoring output this season. It was the second lowest scoring night for a Thunder opponent. OKC held Orlando, last year’s other NBA Finals participant, to 74 points six games into the season.

Lamar Odom, with a team-high 15 points, was the only other Lakers player to score in double figures as L.A. shot just 39.2 percent.

"Our defensive effort has been on key,” Green said.

"(Assistant coach) Ron (Adams) has been doing a great job of keeping our focus on that. He’s been pushing us each game to get better and better. We’ve been doing a great job of listening and sticking to our principles. And we need to keep doing that if we want to continue to make this run.”

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