Looking ahead to a potential Game 7Tuesday’s 24-point loss at L.A. could have ruined any remaining hope the Thunder had to win this series, since OKC must now win Friday in Game 6 and take the potential closeout game on the Lakers’ court. But immediately following the game, Thunder players maintained a positive outlook and chose to remember the two encouraging road losses in Games 1 and 2 rather than the most recent blowout. "It’s a long series, first one to win four,” said Thabo Sefolosha. "It’s a tough loss. But we’ve had five games against them now and we were in the game for four of them. So I think it’s one bad game and we’re going to bounce back.”
Learning valuable lessonsNo matter what happens from here in what’s become a thrilling playoff debut for the Thunder, players say they understand that today’s lessons will make them better tomorrow. "It’s great,” Westbrook said. "It’s a lovely experience. To be in this moment and play in this type of atmosphere, playing against the defending champs, it’s a great feeling and a great opportunity for us.” Six of the Thunder’s nine rotation players are in the playoffs for the first time.
Durant’s No. 35 jersey cracks top 10 in salesFor the first time in his career, Durant’s No. 35 jersey ranks in the top 10 in sales at the NBA store in New York City and for purchases made online at NBAStore.com. Durant is ranked ninth. Bryant’s No. 24 jersey ranked No. 1 for the second consecutive year followed by LeBron James, Kevin Garnett, Derrick Rose, Dwight Howard, Dwyane Wade, Chris Paul and Paul Pierce. The Lakers have the most popular jerseys, followed by Boston, Cleveland, Chicago and New York.
Good ratingsDespite the lopsided margin and late start, Game 5’s TV ratings ranked as the second highest among Oklahoma City viewers. TNT and Fox Sports Oklahoma had a combined 16.0 rating (9.7 on TNT, 6.3 on Fox Sports, a team record). With the Thunder trailing by 21 points at halftime, second-half ratings were down about one-third to 11.1 (6.9 on TNT, 4.2 on Fox Sports).
BrieflyThe Thunder will again blue-out the Ford Center for Game 6 on Friday. Blue Thunder T-shirts, courtesy of U.S. Fleet Tracking, will be placed on every Ford Center seat. ...The national anthem on Friday will be performed by Leona Mitchell, an Enid native who is an acclaimed opera star.