The Oklahoma City Thunder went into Wednesday night’s game looking to rebound from their loss to the Denver Nuggets on Monday night. What better way to bounce back than beating the number-one seed Los Angeles Lakers?
The Thunder were +6 underdogs against the Lakers tonight, but OKC didn’t trail the entire game, even without their sixth man of the year candidate, Dennis Schröder. They led by as many as 20 points.
Luguentz Dort started on Lebron James tonight and he did not disappoint. Dort held James to 19 points on 7/19 shooting and 0-5 from three-point range.
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, the Thunder’s leading scorer, only finished with 13 points tonight, but seven of those came in the first quarter, and he contributed in many other ways. Along with his 13 points, he finished with seven rebounds, five assists, and three steals.
The Thunder played great three-point defense. The Lakers shot 1 for 12 from behind the arc in the first quarter and 5 for 37 overall (13.5%). OKC was only 5 for 24 from the three-point line, but their solid defense helped them cruise to a win.
In Monday night’s game, the Thunder did struggle from the free-throw line late in the game, but that was not the case tonight. They started the game 17-17 from the charity stripe, and finished 32-36 (88.9%).
Steven Adams took a scary fall while driving to the basket against JaVale McGee, but he ended up returning to the game later on.
When asked about it after the game, Adams joked about the fall.
“I fell over, hurt myself, found out that I made the bucket, and then it just healed, man,” Adams said. “That’s how it goes.” He finished with 18 points on 7-10 shooting, seven rebounds, and two assists, while holding Anthony Davis to only nine points on 3-11 shooting.
Chris Paul finished with 21 points on 8-12 shooting, seven rebounds, and six assists. The Lakers really had no answer for him all game.
Danilo Gallinari tacked on 19 points and seven rebounds and shot 40% from behind the arc.
Dort had 14 points and four rebounds. He also went a perfect 6-6 from the free-throw line.
Abdel Nader’s hot shooting has been a surprise since the resumption of the season. He followed up his 13-point game on Monday night with seven points and two rebounds on Wednesday.
Darius Bazley, Nerlens Noel, Andre Roberson, and Hamidou Diallo combined for 13 points, but a lot of their contributions didn’t show on the stat sheet. They all made great defensive plays and created chaos all over the court.
The Thunder beat the Lakers 105-86.