Scoring titleKevin Durant says team goals are his primary focus but finally admitted after Wednesday’s game that winning the NBA scoring title (30.1) was a memorable achievement. He is the youngest scoring champion in NBA history. "It’s not something I came into the season saying I wanted to get,” Durant said. "But it feels good to be a part of history. ... It feels even better to get 50 wins.” Durant has downplayed the scoring title and averaging 30 or more points. "I’ve got to tell you guys that,” Durant said, smiling. "But it was in the back of my mind the whole season to be honest with you. It’s going to be cool to go home and say you’re the scoring champ at 21 years old. It’s a blessing, something I can’t take for granted.”
KRSTIC UPDATENenad Krstic said his knee injury has been a chronic condition that worsened in an overtime loss at Utah. He tried to play through the pain the following night a week ago against Denver but left in the second half. An MRI revealed a bone bruise. Krstic said doctors used a skin graft from his left knee for his right knee when he underwent reconstructive knee surgery three years ago while playing for New Jersey. "Actually, I’ve had (a sore knee) the second half of the season,” Krstic said. "I banged my knee in the Utah game and tried to play the Denver game. Every time it gets hit it’s painful. I was ineffective and didn’t want to hurt the team. But it’s nothing serious. I’ll be ready (for the playoffs).” Said Thunder coach Scott Brooks: "He did some shooting (Wednesday). He will increase that (Thursday), then every day (increase his rehab more). We’re hopeful.”
DURANT 6th ON Free-throw CHARTDurant was 5-of-5 at the line vs. Memphis to finish with 756 free throws, the most in 23 years, the sixth most in NBA history behind Jerry West, Wilt Chamberlain, Oscar Robertson, Adrian Dantley and Michael Jordan. They are the only players to make 800 or more free throws in a season. Durant also improved his free-throw percentage to 90.0 percent.
BENCH SUPPORTWhen the Grizzlies sliced a 27-point deficit to 97-91, Serge Ibaka (15 points, nine rebounds, five blocks) hit two free throws and blocked a shot to lead a fast-break that pushed the lead back to 10. Eric Maynor also had a big game (15 points, 10 assists) off the bench, playing key fourth-quarter minutes. "Those two guys really stabilized the game,” Brooks said. "They did a great job of coming in and giving us an added lift. Eric was really good... and Serge continues to get better protecting the paint.”
MULLENS, SHAKUR RECALLEDRookie center Byron Mullens and guard Mustafa Shakur were recalled by the Thunder before Wednesday’s game. Mullens and Shakur, signed last month out of the D-League, will both return to the Tulsa 66ers in time for the second round of the playoffs. Both will return to the 66ers this weekend when Tulsa opens a best-of-3 semifinal series Friday night against the Iowa Energy.