The OKC Thunder and Houston Rockets kick off one of the most intriguing 1st round match ups in recent playoff memory. Last year sixth man award winner James Harden comes back to OKC, where he began his career only to be ousted by ownership to avoid paying the luxury tax. OKC will attempt to prove the naysayers wrong and show they have what it takes to repeat as Western conference championship and that James Harden was not needed to accomplish the feat.
1st Quarter: OKC begin the game with great tempo jumping to an early 11 point advantage. The Rockets are showing their inexperience in the playoffs as the begin the game 0 for 9 from the field. Since starting the game fast the Thunder has cooled off going through a 6 minute scoreless stretch. Both teams appear to be settling into the game as the reserves begin to check in and the quarter comes to a close.
Thunder leads 26-19
2nd Quarter: The Thunder begin the quarter with 3 consecutive turnovers allowing the Rockets to close the OKC lead to a single basket. Rockets guard Patrick Beverly has been an unlikely factor in the game allowing the Rockets to now tie the game the midway point in the 2nd quarter. The teams are currently trading baskets with neither team able to seize control or momentum in the quarter. Serge Ibaka however has had several dunks in the quarter for the Thunder along with a block that led to a fastbreak finished by Kendrick Perkins. The Rockets appears to lost some focus as the quarter wines down with OKC going on a 18-5 run aided by the Rockets turnovers many which were unforced.
Thunder leads 60-47
3rd Quarter: OKC has come out aggressive which has allowed them to extend their lead up to 22 points. Serge Ibaka continues to have an impact on the game connecting on several shots from 3 point range. Meanwhile the Rockets have become stagnate on offense going through long periods of scoring droughts which the Thunder have been able to capitalized upon. Russell Westbrook finished the quarter with an impressive end to end layup that gives the Thunder their largest lead of the game. Westbrook currently stand 2 rebound shy of a triple double.
Thunder leads 89-66
4th Quarter: Kevin Durant begins the quarter with a soaring dunk that was capped by a two 3 point shots in the corner by veteran Derek Fisher to give the Thunder an insurmountable lead of 33 points the Thunder are in full control! The Rockets have emptied their bench ultimately conceding victory to the OKC Thunder.
Thunder lead series 1-0