Recap: In a battle between worst and first, Thunder fall to Lakers, 114-110

Thunderstruck - WBB

OKC failed to bring the thunder in LA as the Lakers stunned Loud City, with the Thunder defense giving up a 40 point scorer for the second time in a row.

Box ScoreLakers Recap

Well, Thunder fans, it is time to wave goodbye to first place...but hopefully not for long. The Oklahoma City Thunder lost to the moribund Los Angeles Lakers, 114-110. In a game where the Thunder both lead large and trailed big, they could not make the comeback complete and fell on the road to a lottery team.

In a battle between the first and the worst, the bottom feeders prevailed.  For the most part, the game was an offensive battle between the inconsistent Oklahoma City Thunder and the injury stricken Los Angeles Lakers.  What was supposed to an easy win for Oklahoma, turned out to be a hard fought battle of surprises and upsets.


What is your initial reaction to tonight's result?

Really?  Unlike the loss to the Suns where it was difficult to be infuriated, this loss was just painful and heart-breaking.  The defense was slow and lazy, the turnovers were stupid passes, and the fouls came in bunches.  The Lakers shot 30 foul shots, making 25, while the Thunder shot 21 and made only 14. The fouls were often committed on the wrong person; Jodie Meeks.  Meeks shoots nearly 84 percent from the charity stripe and today, he went 14 of 14.  It didn't help that he only missed 7 shots and scored 42 on Durant, Jones III, and Jackson.  As the commentator said,

"When you think of a player in this game to score 40 or 50, you think Durant and Westbrook, not Jodie Meeks!"

So when the game was said and done, I was surprised, to say the least.

What was, overall, the main reason why the Thunder lost?

This one does not come as a shock to anybody...DEFENSE!.  Again, the Thunder gave up a large amount of points and an abundance to one specific player.  Last game it was Green, this game it was Meeks, two containable players.  The close-outs were sloppy and sluggish, once again.  The Thunder gave up 6 3 pointers to Meeks and 3 to Jordan Farmar.  As a team, the Lakers nearly shot better from behind the arc then anywhere on the court.

The fouls were a huge part of the game as well.  OKC let up 30 personal fouls to LA's 16.  Of the starting five, 3 players picked up 4 fouls and 2 bench players contributed 4 as well.  This forced Durant, who recorded his 3rd triple-double of the season, to take some time on the bench along with Westbrook and Serge.  The only other upside to this loss was this monster slam by Westbrook.

What was a key statistic to understanding the game?

Like last game, three pointers were a key statistic to understanding the game.  The Lakers made 13 three pointers of 31 attempts.  But I feel the hardest stat to take in is the foul shot department.  30 attempts, 25 makes, 83.3 percent.  Try to take that in...

What does this game mean to the Thunder tonight and going forward?

This game stands as a game to remember for the remainder of the season.  Already, questions have been piling up concerning the Thunder's chances of winning a ring.  This past week has been the worst nightmare of a Thunder fan.  OKC needs to clean up their defense or else the red hot Spurs will widen the gap between the 1 and 2 seed in the playoffs.  The Thunder need to remember this game so it does not happen again.

***

Justin's Awards

Thunder Wonder: Kevin Durant- 27 points (8/19 field goal shooting, 7/11 free throw shooting, 4/11 three point shooting), 10 rebounds, 12 assists {third triple-double of the season}

Thunder Down Under: Serge Ibaka- 21 points (9/18 field goal shooting, 3/5 free throw shooting), 15 rebounds (8 defensive and 7 offensive), 2 blocks, 2 steals

Thunder Blunder: Russell Westbrook- (before you go nuts!) 7/23 shooting (30.4 percent), 2/10 three point shooting (20 percent), 8 turnovers

Thunder Plunderer: Jodie Meeks- 42 points (11/18 field goal shooting, 6/11 three point shooting, 14/14 free throw shooting), 4 steals

***

Next game: vs. the Houston Rockets Tuesday 7 PM CDT on NBA TV

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