Durant masterclass seals Thunder win

Kevin Durant starred in a 111-109 victory for the Oklahoma City Thunder over the Atlanta Hawks in the NBA.

    Kevin Durant goes up for the dunk against the Atlanta Hawks en route to a 41 point game for the forward [AFP]
    Kevin Durant goes up for the dunk against the Atlanta Hawks en route to a 41 point game for the forward [AFP]

    Forward Kevin Durant scored 41 points and hit the game-winning shot for the Oklahoma City Thunder in a comeback 111-109 victory over the Atlanta Hawks.

    Durant scored the last seven points for Oklahoma City and also collected five assists and three blocked shots.

    He also extended his scoring streak to 11 games with at least 30 points.

    Paul Millsap scored 23 points and grabbed eight rebounds for the Hawks (23-21).

    He tied the game at 109-109 with 22 seconds left before Durant responded.

    The Thunder (36-10) have won eight in a row to take over the best record in the Western Conference even while playing without All-Star Russell Westbrook.

    Gerald Green scored a season-high 30 points and backcourt partner Goran Dragic added 24 as Phoenix used a fast start to knock off the Philadelphia 76ers.

    Phoenix too good

    Phoenix (26-18) shot 77.3 percent from the field in the first quarter while outscoring the Sixers 40-26 - the Suns' highest-scoring first quarter of the season - and then fought off Philadelphia (14-31) the rest of the way.

    Patrick Patterson's 12-foot jumper with six seconds left lifted the Toronto Raptors to a 104-103 victory over the Brooklyn Nets.

    The forward stole guard Deron Williams' inbound pass, then took a pass from guard Kyle Lowry to give Toronto the lead.

    Nets guard Paul Pierce, who scored a season-high 33 points and hit seven-of-10 attempts from three-point range, missed a desperation heave at the buzzer.

    Brooklyn (20-23) saw its five-game winning streak snapped.

    Lowry contributed 31 points, seven assists, five rebounds for Toronto (23-21).

    Blake Griffin scored 20 points, and the Los Angeles Clippers extended their winning streak to three games with a 114-86 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks.

    The Clippers (32-15) shot 54.4 percent from the field and made 14-of-28 three-pointers while playing against the NBA's worst team.

    The Bucks (8-36) held a closed-door meeting after a 25-point loss to the Atlanta Hawks on Saturday, but with just nine available players, they could not keep up with the Clippers, who led by 23 at halftime.

    Minnesota forward Kevin Love scored 31 points, leading the Timberwolves to a 95-86 victory over the Chicago Bulls.

    The victory ended Minnesota's seven-game losing streak to Chicago.

    Two players who have missed the majority of the season with injuries brought a spark from the bench.

    Forward Ronny Turiaf scored 14 points and forward Chase Budinger added 12 for the Timberwolves (22-22).

    Carlos Boozer had 20 points and 14 rebounds for Chicago (22-22).

    Derrick Favors and forwards Marvin Williams and Jeremy Evans all tallied double-doubles, and the Utah Jazz took advantage of a short-handed Sacramento Kings squad en route to earn a 106-99 victory.

    The outcome pushed the Jazz's record to 16-29 and dropped the Kings to 15-29, marking the first time this season Utah has not owned the worst record in the Western Conference.

    Sacramento played without injured leading scorers DeMarcus Cousins and Rudy Gay, and also lost starting point guard Isaiah Thomas in the third quarter due to a stomach ailment.

    SOURCE: Reuters


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