The Thunder scored 21 fast-break points Friday to move into the NBA’s top-10 in transition points. Fifteen percent of OKC’s scoring is fast-break points.
"Running is a big part of what we do,” said coach Scott Brooks. "I don’t focus on it. There are not a lot of times I talk about it in practice, or even during games. But every time I mention it, I always talk about defense and rebounding first. The first part is getting a stop. "But when we get stops and not take the ball out of the net (following an opponent scoring), it gives our athletic wings and our athletic point guard a chance to really race up the court. That puts a lot of pressure on a defense.”
IBAKA HAS CAREER HIGHSerge Ibaka, who returned after sitting out one game with back spasms, scored a career-high 14 points, all in the second half. Ibaka was one of seven Thunder players to score in double figures, the first time that’s happened this season. "Serge has an amazing ability to score around the basket,” Brooks said. "Those are not easy shots, the four- to six-foot shots. It’s a touch shot. He’s one of the best at making those. When he does miss it’s surprising. His hands are improving every day.”
LATE CHOICESKevin Durant was on the bench in the waning minutes Friday because OKC owned a double-digit lead the entire second half, leading by as many as 25 points. But in the two previous games, both losses, OKC was 0-of-18 the final 4 1/2 minutes. Since Durant attempted only six of the 18 shots, does the All-Star need more touches late in games? "Kevin is making good plays. He doesn’t have to take every shot,” Brooks said. "You’re not going to make forced shots very often. You’re playing with fire if you take bad shots in late-game situations.”