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Warriors' Kevin Durant on boos from Thunder fans: "I actually thought it would be a little louder (full post-game interview) pic.twitter.com/EWIKQMsS2N— Ben Golliver (@BenGolliver) February 12, 2017
Also, Stephen Curry took one of the cupcake shirts Thunder fans were wearing:
Steph taking home a souvenir from OKC pic.twitter.com/IXgiO4Ldkl— NBA on ESPN (@ESPNNBA) February 12, 2017
Steph Curry took a cupcake T-shirt with him to the locker room. "It's a souvenir for bigger and better things," he said.— Tim Cato (@tim_cato) February 12, 2017
Warriors 130, Thunder 114 (Final): There was lots of booing. There was lots of jawing. There was a lot of angst. There was a lot of Russell Westbrook. But in the end, Kevin Durant’s return to Oklahoma City was just another comfortable Warriors victory.
The Warriors took control by the beginning of the second quarter and never really looked back. The crowd got into the game again in the third quarter after Durant and Westbrook jawed at each other entering a timeout, but Oklahoma City could never get the game under double digits after that.
Durant and Westbrook had stat lines that typified each player’s season. Westbrook went all out, scoring a whopping 46 points, but also committing 11 turnovers. Durant, meanwhile, scored 34 points while often deferring to his more talented teammates.
Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson chipped in with 26 each, while Andre Iguodala and James Michael McAdoo played excellent defense off the bench.
Warriors 123, Thunder 104 (3:39 left): Kevin Durant says goodnight.
The Thunder kinda made this a game, but that ended quickly. Durant now has 34 points and nine rebounds.
Warriors 110, Thunder 96 (7:18 left): KD-Russ jump ball!
Chants of “Russell!” rained down. Russ won the tip and OKC got an Andre Roberson putback on the ensuing possession.
Warriors 108, Thunder 96 (8:35 left): Hmmmmmmm. The Warriors are still in control, but Oklahoma City’s bench, which did nothing in the second quarter, has come to play early in the fourth. Anthony Morrow uncorked his patented rapid release on a three in transition to cut the lead to 12. And now Russell Westbrook is coming back in.
Warriors 105, Thunder 88 (End 3rd): This game officially is chippy now.
Kevin Durant, angered ostensibly by being shoved into the stanchion, went right at former teammate Andre Roberson. It’s not clear why the jawing escalated to that degree, but Durant is clearly mad now.
Meanwhile, Russell Westbrook has 41 points, including a driving dunk to end the quarter. He’s three assists shy of another triple double.
Warriors 94, Thunder 76 (4:17 left): HERE WE GO.
Westbrook scored a couple times with Durant guarding him, set up Victor Oladipo for a 3, then started jawing at KD as the two teams headed to timeout. It looks like he’s saying “I’M COMING.”
He’ll have to come a long way to make this a game, though.
Please note an injured Enes Kanter racing off the bench to hype Russ up.
Warriors 87, Thunder 61 (7:12 left): There’s really not much to say. Russell Westbrook just shot an air ball.
This one’s getting ugly.
Warriors 73, Thunder 50 (Halftime): This got out of hand quickly. The Warriors are just too good.
Four Warriors are in double figures. Russell Westbrook has 21 points and nine rebounds, but also has seven turnovers. The Warriors have now outscored the Thunder by 70 points in 10 quarters this season.
Warriors 59, Thunder 41 (3:27 left): OK, this is pretty good, Thunder fans:
The “cupcake” chants are a reference to an old nickname Kendrick Perkins used to give the young Thunder players when he felt they were being soft. From Sports Illustrated’s Lee Jenkins:
When Kendrick Perkins played center for the Thunder, he called teammates "cupcake" if he thought they were acting a little soft. Westbrook and Durant adopted the term in jest. Westbrook posted a bittersweet pic on Instagram: three plates of cupcakes topped by red and blue stars and sprinkles.
Here’s the picture Westbrook posted on July 4, the day Durant announced his decision to leave.
Warriors 55, Thunder 37 (4:53 left): Those boos we heard early on? We’re not hearing them much anymore. Kevin Durant nailed a spot-up three, then tipped in a Klay Thompson miss for five straight points. You didn’t hear Thunder fans speak up much during those two moments.
Warriors 45, Thunder 30 (8:02 left): When Russell Westbrook checked out in the first quarter, the game was tied at 22. The Warriors outscored the Thunder, 23-8, with him on the bench. He just checked back in.
Warriors 37, Thunder 26 (10:17 left): It didn’t take long for the Warriors’ bench unit to extend the lead. Shaun Livingston and James Michael McAdoo provided terrific minutes on both ends, culminating with McAdoo swatting Cameron Payne and finishing on the other end off a nice pass from Livingston.
Warriors 30, Thunder 24 (End 1st): After a rough star, the Warriors calmed down and slowly took control later in the quarter, ending on a 12-2 run. Their defense forced Russell Westbrook into five turnovers and several wild misses, while their offense began to flow beautifully. Andre Iguodala entered and provided a lift, nailing a corner three and slipping inside for a dunk. Stephen Curry ended the quarter with a long three-point bomb and a drawn charge to end the quarter with nine points and five assists.
Thunder 22, Warriors 20 (2:32 left) : Russ got another chance to isolate Kevin Durant. This time, he failed.
It’s been a sloppy game so far. Westbrook already has four turnovers, while Durant is shooting 2-8 from the field.
Thunder 17, Warriors 12 (5:42 left):
There was a fleeting moment when Durant was switched onto Westbrook. The crowd went wild waiting for Westbrook to do something. But in the end, Westbrook ran a boring pick and roll for a Steven Adams bucket. “Mature play,” said both Mark Jackson and Jeff Van Gundy. Maybe. Still wanted to see them go one-on-one.
Thunder 13, Warriors 8 (7:33 left) : The Thunder came out fast, responding to the rabid crowd. They hit four of their first five shots, with the lone miss coming on a blown Russell Westbrook layup on the break. Kevin Durant, showered with boos as we all expected, made his first shot, but has otherwise been quiet. Oklahoma City’s tough perimeter defense, with Andre Roberson all over KD and Victor Oladipo hounding Klay Thompson, has made life tough. Domantas Sabonis has some nice moments as well, including a great switch onto Stephen Curry and a beautiful bounce pass to Oladipo for a layup.
Yup, there was lots of booing
Here were the introductions that ABC didn’t show you.
a very unwarm welcome for Kevin Durant pic.twitter.com/Ux4j89QtXS— Tim Cato (@tim_cato) February 12, 2017
Scratch that: ABC showed them after the fact.
So yeah, KD is in the building.
Kevin Durant is officially back in Oklahoma City. Here is his walk-in outfit. pic.twitter.com/FpaCccsCOW— Dr Cork Gaines (@CorkGaines) February 12, 2017
Durant also took the time to catch up with arena employees he once saw every game.
Durant talking with Coach Mack, long time arena employee who stands outside the visiting locker room: pic.twitter.com/vb3YPberLI— Royce Young (@royceyoung) February 11, 2017
But he did not get a friendly reception, that’s for sure.
Yep, the signs and shirts are out.
Some Oklahoma City folks were wearing these the day before:
OKC fans will have zero chill tonight. pic.twitter.com/8OXfqt3dgI— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) February 11, 2017
It came from the for sale sign that I put in his (yard) on the Fourth of July. It said, “For Sale By Coward.” Unfortunately, I didn’t use the K then, but an hour after that I knew I was ready to use the K. I had it ready, we had this shirt ready. We just wanted to show him our dislove and they kind of think they still have some love in Oklahoma City. They have no love, at all. So I had to make something that just showed that.
And these are out before the game began:
KD and Russ are getting along just fine outside Chesapeake Energy Arena pic.twitter.com/jeLThmHqxf— Tim Cato (@tim_cato) February 11, 2017
Someone dressed up as a cupcake wearing Durant’s No. 35.
Why a cupcake? Because that’s what Kendrick Perkins used to call the younger members of the Thunder when he felt they were acting soft. Russell Westbrook posted an Instagram photo of a bunch of cupcakes on the day Durant left for Golden State.
At least you can probably walk into Cheasapeake Energy Arena in that outfit. These fans definitely can’t:
They probably won't let these fans --or snakes--in for Durant's return game. I'm guessing the game's not their point though pic.twitter.com/JDVIAHToEq— Ramona Shelburne (@ramonashelburne) February 11, 2017
Russell Westbrook played coy as usual
He didn’t say much of interest beforehand, but then stormed in wearing a Willie Beamen jersey from Any Given Sunday:
There are about 700 different ways this could be interpreted as a shot at Durant. We analyze all of those over here.
KD wanted to rent out a steakhouse he used to frequent for friends after the game ended. The steakhouse refused.
Who else can you follow?
SB Nation’s Tim Cato is live on scene. Follow his adventures on SB Nation’s Instagram account.
It took a while, but Kevin Durant’s first game in Oklahoma City since leaving the Thunder is finally upon us. The NBA waited until the week before the All-Star Game to bring Durant’s Warriors to Oklahoma City, but that day is finally here.
The game will begin at 8:30 p.m. ET on Saturday and be televised on ABC as part of its Saturday showcase package.
Durant’s Warriors are surging, as most expected when they came together. At 45-8, they stand four games ahead of the second-place Spurs in the West and in the NBA. Durant has been consistently excellent, averaging 26 points per game while shooting a career-high 53 percent from the field.
But in Durant’s absence, Russell Westbrook has taken his game to a level few have ever seen. The Thunder’s lone remaining star player is on pace to become the first player since Oscar Robertson to average a triple double in a season. He’s led the Thunder to a 31-23 record, the seventh-best in the West.
The previous two Durant-Westbrook showdowns have not ended well for Oklahoma City’s star. The Warriors took the first game on Nov. 3 by 26 points, then followed it up with a 21-point victory in mid-January. But both of those games were in Oakland, which was a friendly atmosphere for Durant. Saturday’s clash in Oklahoma City certainly won’t be.