The Oklahoma City Thunder took it upon themselves to stop the Spurs on Thursday night, and they did it the only way they know how. Kevin Durant dropped 28 points and the playoff atmosphere at Chesapeake Energy Arena pumped up the Thunder defense as they cruised to a win, 106-94.
San Antonio looked to be in control until late in the second quarter, when the Thunder took back their court and drew within just three points to close the half. A flurry by Oklahoma City to open the third period put them in front by double-digits, and the team with the second-best record in the Western Conference never looked back.
The win snapped the Spurs' 19-game winning streak. San Antonio would have been just the 6th team in NBA history to win 20 straight games had they been able to survive the Thunder onslaught. Oklahoma City's defensive effort forced 18 San Antonio turnovers as well as a middling 43.2 percent shooting from the field. The Thunder were dominant, shooting 49.4 percent on the night and grabbing 30 points on the fastbreak.
Russell Westbrook had 27 points on 10-of-20 shooting for the Thunder, adding six assists and four steals. Serge Ibaka added 11 points and 12 rebounds to go along with three blocks. Patty Mills led all San Antonio scorers with 21 points off the bench, adding six rebounds and an assist. Tim Duncan was the most effective Spurs starter with 17 points and eight rebounds, although he shot just 5-of-15 from the field.
The loss puts the Spurs at 59-17, still firmly in first place in the West. The win puts the Thunder within striking distance at 55-19 as the season winds down. Oklahoma City plays the Rockets on Friday night in Houston.