The Oklahoma City Thunder return home after blowing a golden opportunity to take a firm grasp of their second-round series against the Los Angeles Clippers. Now with the series tied at 2-2, the two teams face a pivotal Game 5 in Oklahoma City on Tuesday night.
The Thunder really should be going for the series victory, considering they led Game 4 by as many as 22 points and held a 16-point advantage in the fourth quarter. But Oklahoma City melted down on both sides of the ball, allowing the Clippers to storm back and potentially save their season.
Look Back at Game 4
Look Back at Game 4
Much of the discussion following the game naturally surrounded Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and Scott Brooks. Durant scored 40 points, but had eight turnovers and wasn't able to take advantage of Chris Paul guarding him down the stretch. Paul did a nice job crowding Durant in the post, and the Clippers made sure to send help in order to force the MVP into making tough decisions. Meanwhile, Westbrook started jacking up shots, and Brooks didn't do much to change the Thunder's strategy on offense.
But while Oklahoma City's offense had its share of problems, the defense was an even larger culprit in the loss. The Clippers carved the Thunder up to the tune of 38 points in the fourth quarter, with most of those points coming on shots at the rim and free throws. Los Angeles made 12 shots in the restricted area to go along with nine free throws in the final frame.
The surprise hero was Darren Collison, who scored 12 of his 18 points in the fourth quarter. Paul had a superb overall game, scoring 23 points and dishing out 10 assists. Blake Griffin had 25 points and nine rebounds.
The Thunder will have a raucous home crowd at their back in Game 5, but the Clippers have shown the ability to win in Oklahoma City. At this point in the series, it's anybody's game.
Game time: 9:30 p.m. ET
Location: Chesapeake Energy Arena, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Radio: WWLS 98.1FM OKC, KFWB 980AM/KWKW 1330