The final stretch of an instant classic

“I was proud of our guys in the way they competed in the game and certainly offensively. Golden State being the team they are offensively. I thought it was a great defensive performance for us in the first half. I thought we really defended really well. We let Curry get loose a few times, I think he made three straight threes. In the second half I thought we still did a pretty good job, but overall I thought it was a game where our guys just laid it on the line. I thought we took a step in the right direction defensively. I thought there was a lot of positive things to take from the game and hopefully we can continue to grow and develop from this.” -Head coach Billy Donovan’s opening statement.

The final quarter was just the ending of the most entertaining and anticipated game in the Thunder era. It was intense and the ending was pretty controversial. At this point, it looked like OKC may actually pull the game out, but due to Klay Thompson’s 9 late quarter points and Curry’s 8, they managed to get the Oklahoma City lead down to 2 with just seconds left. At the very end of the game, and the crowd going crazy, Andre Iguodala went up for a last second 15-foot jumper over Durant and missed it. The buzzer rang, the crowd was lit and the Oklahoma City Thunder go on to knock off the Golden State Warriors….right? That’s exactly what happened until the crowd saw Durant arguing with the referee, obviously contesting a call made. They called a foul on the shot. Durant seemed obviously upset and so was the crowd, just like they should have been. You don’t call a foul like that late in the game, against one of the NBA’s best players at home…you just don’t, unless it’s a clear and obvious foul. Subsequently Andre hit both of the free throws and the game went into overtime, 103-103. 

Overtime started out just like the beginning of the game started, on Oklahoma City’s side. However another controversial foul called on Kevin disqualified him for the game and the remaining few minutes of the extra period. At this point, fans grew concerned for their Oklahoma City team finishing this game out without the sniper. Honestly the team finished the game pretty well, but two buckets late for Golden state pulled them into a tie with Oklahoma City and on the next possession, Steph brought the ball up the court and seemingly threw up a 30-foot shot with 3.2 seconds left and drained it. This put Golden State up 121-118 and with just .6 seconds left in the game the Thunder weren’t able to get a quality shot off and Golden State came back to win the game.

“I hoped it did. I got a good rhythm dribbling up and found a spot to take off from. I had confidence all night and thankfully that last one went in and we had the opportunity to win the game.”-Steph Curry on if he knew his last shot was going in.

Although the outcome was disappointing, the Thunder have no other option but to use this game as a building block defensively for the rest of the season. It took a long time, but maybe this team has figured out what to do defensively against teams. Kevin ended the game with 37 points and 12 rebounds, Russell had 26 points and 13 assists to go along with that and Serge Ibaka had a very solid game with 15 points and 20 rebounds…five of which were offensive.

Oklahoma City falls to (41-18) on the season, and hits the road for a four game road trip, one of which being against the Golden State Warriors again in California. Monday they will play the Sacramento Kings who typically gives Oklahoma City all they can handle. \


Steph’s post-game interview.




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About the author

Founder & Editor-in-Chief. National Association of Black Journalists. University of Central Oklahoma.

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