Westbrook’s 23 lead surging Thunder past struggling Wizards

first_imgOklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook (0) goes for a layup past Washington Wizards guard John Wall (2) and forward Markieff Morris (5) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Friday, Nov. 2, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Al Drago)WASHINGTON — Continuing their turnaround from a terrible season start, the Oklahoma City Thunder picked up their fourth consecutive victory by beating the struggling, booed-at-home Washington Wizards 134-111 behind Russell Westbrook’s 23 points and 12 assists Friday night.From 0-4 to 4-4, the Thunder are clicking right now, led by Westbrook, who missed the first two games after a procedure on his right knee and sat out the final quarter of the rout at Washington.ADVERTISEMENT Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award TIP-INSThunder: Came in shooting 27 percent on 3s, but hit 47 percent — 15 for 32 — against Washington. … George has complained of a nerve issue with his left foot, and coach Billy Donovan said George thinks it affects his defense. “There’s times where he wishes he could push off a little bit better and move a little bit better — more to the extreme that he’s capable of doing,” Donovan said. “I think he still feels he’s hindered by it.”Wizards: Otto Porter Jr. played with a bruised big left toe and scored nine points in only 16 minutes. … Brooks on Ian Mahinmi, who started at center while Howard was sidelined but now returns to a backup role: “His minutes are going to shrink quite a bit, but he has to be ready whenever he’s called on.”NEW SPONSORThe Wizards’ jerseys had a sponsor’s logo for the first time, part of a multiyear deal with an insurance company that also will advertise on uniforms for the WNBA’s Washington Mystics and the G League’s Capital City Go-Go. Nearly all NBA teams now have such a jersey sponsorship arrangement; the Thunder still do not.UP NEXT:Thunder: Host the Pelicans on Monday.Wizards: Host the Knicks on Sunday. And even though OKC was the team playing on the second night of a back-to-back, it looked a lot fresher and more active than Washington, which was coming off a two-day break and finally got to see new center Dwight Howard make his debut.After missing all of training camp, every exhibition game and the first seven regular-season games with a sore backside, Howard started and immediately appeared to have an impact, scoring 13 first-quarter points. But soon enough, Washington got into its usual bad habits, the ones that have led to loss after loss so far: ineffective defense and low-effort rebounding.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSJapeth Aguilar wins 1st PBA Finals MVP award for GinebraSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back ChrissThe Wizards have lost four games in a row to drop to 1-7, and spectators let the players hear their displeasure in the second quarter, jeering when OKC went ahead 61-40 on Jerami Grant’s dunk on a pass from Westbrook. When Paul George made his third straight 3 attempt, a night after going 0 for 10 from beyond the arc, it made the halftime score 79-50, equaling the Thunder’s record for most points in a half.An Oklahoma City team averaging 109 points this season was already at 110 after three quarters. Allen Durham still determined to help Meralco win 1st PBA title LATEST STORIES Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California college Gov’t to employ 6,000 displaced by Taal Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Nextcenter_img Japeth Aguilar embraces role, gets rewarded with Finals MVP plum View comments George wound up with 17 points to surpass 10,000 for his career, and Grant scored 22.Howard had 20 points on 7-of-8 shooting, three rebounds and four fouls in 23 minutes. When he was out of the game, he either laid down on his stomach on the sideline or stood.Bradley Beal scored 27 points, and John Wall had 19 points and nine assists, but Washington’s pair of All-Star guards also combined for 12 turnovers.The Thunder went up by as many as 33 points in the third quarter and shot 57 percent for the game. They outrebounded the Wizards 38-30.None of that should come as a surprise, given that Washington began the night allowing an NBA-worst 122.4 points per game and averaging only 41.3 rebounds, 27th in the 30-club league.ADVERTISEMENT Will you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines? Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazil Tim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crown MOST READ Teen gymnast Carlos Yulo makes PH history with bronze in world championships Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. last_img read more