Wednesday, March 12, 2014
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Thunder 106, Rockets 98

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[March 12, 2014]  OKLAHOMA CITY — Thunder 106, Rockets 98: Kevin Durant scored 42 points for his 11 40th-point outing of the season as host Oklahoma City defeated Houston for the third straight time this season.

Russell Westbrook added 24 points, seven assists and four steals as the Thunder bounced back from Sunday’s loss to the lowly Los Angeles Lakers. Serge Ibaka grabbed 16 rebounds to go with 12 points and four blocked shots

James Harden had 28 points, nine assists and eight rebounds for the Rockets, who had a five-game winning streak halted. Chandler Parsons scored 19 points and Francisco Garcia added 11 off the bench.

Houston trailed by 13 points midway through the fourth quarter but moved within 97-92 after Harden drained a straight-away 3-pointer with 2:25 remaining. Westbrook hit three free throws with 1:31 left to push the Thunder lead to eight and the Rockets were never again closer than six.

Durant scored 17 points and Westbrook added 15 in a first half that ended with the Thunder holding a 56-41 lead at the break. Oklahoma City led by 16 after two free throws by Durant with 4:31 left in the third before Houston cut its deficit to 77-67 entering the final stanza.

GAME NOTEBOOK: Harden was 9-of-21 from the field after going 8-of-25 in this season’s first two meetings with the Thunder. … Durant was 5-of-8 from 3-point range as Oklahoma City went 11-of-29 overall. … Houston possessed a 42-26 edge in point in the paint.

[© 2014 Thomson Reuters. All rights reserved.]

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