Thunder Beat The Warriors In A Game Of Runs

The Thunder faced the Warriors in Oakland tonight for the final game of this road trip. The game was very much back and forth early on. Essentially, it was a game of runs. As each team took turns going on big runs. It was Oklahoma City who was able to come out on top at the end with a 123-95 win.

Rapid Recap

The Thunder took an early lead in what would turn into an ugly first quarter for both teams. The defense for Oklahoma City was outstanding, but the offense struggled immensely. Both teams combined for 1-14 shooting from beyond the arc. The Thunder took a tough blow when Terrance Ferguson sprained his ankle. He had to be taken to the locker room and didn’t return.

The Warriors started to heat things up in the second quarter. However, the Thunder was right there with an answer. After a quick run by Golden State, OKC went on their own 12-2 run. The Thunder was able to play aggressively with Klay Thompson being in foul trouble early on. This led to the guards driving to the basket and dishing to Steven Adams. Oklahoma City held a 60-46 lead at halftime.

Golden State once again opened the quarter with a run. However, Oklahoma City was able to weather the storm. In the past, this Thunder team has crumbled in the third quarter when the Warriors have mad a run. This team responded very different tonight and had an answer for nearly all of the Warriors shots. Golden State cut into the lead, but OKC still lead after three quarters.

No surprise here, but the Warriors opened up the fourth quarter on fire. The Thunder was able to once again respond and maintain a solid lead. Paul George led the push from OKC with a couple of shots from beyond the arc. Just as things were getting tense, Hamidou Diallo suffered a bad leg injury. After being taken off on a stretcher, this Thunder team responded with a run that sealed the game. Paul George said, “we just had to rally behind him”. Oklahoma City comes up with a big win over Golden State.

Thunder Player Of The Game

There’s no doubt that Dennis Schröder is the player of the game. Although he came off the bench, he still finished with a career high 32 points.

The Thunder clearly have the best back up point guard in the league. Oklahoma City has the ability to take the ball out of Russell Westbrook’s hands and give it to another play maker. This opens up the OKC offense so much. Without a doubt Schröder is a difference maker for this Thunder team.

3 Quick Thoughts

• Steven Adams Is The Key To Beating The Warriors (Or Any Team).

Steven Adams absolutely destroyed the Warriors tonight. He dominated the boards and shot very efficiently on offense. That being said, don’t let his success on offense take away from what he does on defense. Adams really clogs up the paint which makes it difficult for the opposing team to have proper spacing.

The Thunder really made their runs when Adams got involved on offense. He seems to be the key to success for this Oklahoma City offense. When shots aren’t falling, you know you can get it inside to Adams for some points.

• Do The Little Things

This may be a little redundant, but the little things are so important. The “little things” win games. Offensive rebounds are so important to this teams success, and tonight the Thunder grabbed several offensive rebounds.

The Thunder also did a solid job at rotating on defense and clogging up the lanes. If this Thunder team can continue to do the little things they will continue to win at a high rate.

• Stay Healthy

Staying healthy is often times out of the control of the players. Such as the injuries to Terrance Ferguson and Hamidou Diallo tonight. This goes without saying, but being healthy is key for any team.

A healthy OKC roster is a championship caliber team. Right now, this team is banged up. If the Thunder can get back to full health they can make a run at being the best team in the league this season.

Home Sweet Home

The Thunder will be back home on Friday night after a long road trip. They’ll face the Charlotte Hornets at 7:00 PM CST. The game will be televised on FSOK and broadcast on the radio at WWLS 98.1 FM.

Oklahoma City will have to keep Kemba Walker locked down Friday night. Walker has been carrying the Hornets lately. If the Thunder allow him to heat up it could be a long night in the Peake.

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