I honestly haven't felt worse about a loss this season. Yeah, we just came off of a loss going into this one, yeah, we were on the second end of a back-to-back, and yeah, it probably won't matter in the end. But I I can honestly say that the first thought that popped into my mind when I woke up this morning was, "Man, I really wish we would have won that game against the Clippers." And believe me, that doesn't happen after just any ordinary loss.
The most frustrating thing about this loss is that it looked like a blowout in the first quarter. The Clippers could hardly get inside at all, and mostly shot contested jumpers or got the ball stolen. Meanwhile, the Thunder were slowly building a lead by pounding it inside, and finally managed to stretch that lead to a max of 15 when they got hot from three in the second quarter.
But it was all downhill from there. When I say downhill, I really mean the Thunder drove off of a cliff, crashed into the ground, and then fell into a crevice created in the ground by a sudden earthquake that occurred right after they fell off the cliff. The Thunder's hotness on offense carried them through the second, but after the early quarter run, their defense left a lot to be desired, with the Clippers getting fouled and going to the line at will.
The Clippers finally made their run at the lead in the third quarter, where they could not defend the post if their life depended on it. Blake Griffin, Mo Williams, Craig Smith, and your grandma were all able to break through the Thunder's defense for some points in the paint. Meanwhile, the Thunder were getting frustrated with Russell Westbrook, Kendrick Perkins, and Nazr Mohammed all called for technical fouls. They kept getting called for charges on the offensive end, and turned the ball over like nobody's business.
Below: The Fourth Quarter, Future Analysis, Awards!
In the fourth, the Thunder actually did a decent job of keeping up, but again, a slew of bad play broke the camels back at the end of the quarter. They simply couldn't respond to a Randy Foye three at the end of the game, after they had four attempts to do so. The Clippers won this game, fair and square.
Moving forward, the Thunder are now only 3.5 games up on the Nuggets for the lead in the Northwest Division. They are now three games back of Dallas, but there are only 6 games left in the season, so a upping in position seems unlikely. The Clippers have now reached 30 wins, but they are three games back of Golden State for the 12th spot in the West, and are headed for the lottery.
Thunder Wonder: Kevin Durant, 23 Points, 6 Rebounds, 3 Assists, 2 Blocks
Thunder Down Under: Daequan Cook, for helping out the second quarter run with his two threes.
Thunder Blunder: Russell Westbrook, for his 1-12 Shooting and 4 Turnovers.
Thunder Plunderer: Blake Griffin, 26 Points, 16 Rebounds, 3 Assists, 2 Steals.
Next Game: At the Denver Nuggets, Tuesday, April 5th, 8 PM Central Daylight Time.