NBA

Westbrook, Morrow Lead Thunder Past Pistons

Westbrook, Morrow Lead Thunder Past Pistons

The Oklahoma City Thunder found revenge against the Detroit Pistons, beating them 106-88 Saturday night. The Pistons won the last contest–despite not having Andre Drummond or Reggie Jackson–104-88 in Detroit. The Pistons had Drummond Saturday night, but it didn’t matter much.

Russell Westbrook tallied his second-straight triple-double, his seventh of the season. Westbrook scored 17 points, adding 13 boards and 15 assists. With his 65th career triple-double, Russ has tied LeBron James for the most all-time triple doubles with 44.

Listen to Russell’s post-game comments below:

Coming into the season, it was apparent that Russell Westbrook would be the leader in terms of production, but for the fourth time this season, he didn’t lead the Thunder in scoring: “I think his leadership has really stood out in terms of keeping the guys connected together, keeping them working,” coach Billy Donovan said. “But we got a lot of contributions from a lot of different guys.”

Due to their inconsistent perimeter defense and lack of shooting, most games have seen the Thunder hemorrhage at the three-point line while finding themselves unable to keep up. The Pistons shot just 1-19 from deep, while the Thunder shot 8-23. Coming into the game, the Thunder had been one of the worst three-point defenses in the league. Their effort to get a hand in shooters’ faces was immense.

Part of the Thunder’s dominance was the resurgence of Anthony Morrow, who has seen his play quite limited this season, if he saw the floor at all. He found time early in the game, and Billy Donovan rode the hot hand. Morrow finishing the game shooting 8-12 (including 3-6 from deep) for 21 points in 26 minutes. Considering the Thunder’s shooting woes thus far, Donovan may be forced to consider playing Morrow more often to improve their spacing issues.

Listen to Morrow’s post-game comments below:

Both teams came into to Chesapeake Energy Arena playing back-to-back games. For the Thunder, it was their fourth game in five nights. Although both teams played under the burden of fatigue, the Pistons seemed to be the more lethargic team. A frustrated coach Van Gundy remarked after the game that the Pistons bring an entirely different type energy to their home court:

The Thunder improve to 10-8, while the Pistons fall to 8-10. Next up for the Thunder: Monday night in Madison Square Garden against the New York Knicks.

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