Thunder Strike Spurs In San Antonio, Win Game 5
Until Monday night, every team in the NBA conference finals had not lost at home. The Oklahoma City Thunder changed that with a gutsy 108-103 road win against the San Antonio Spurs, stealing home court advantage in the process. OKC now leads the series 3-2, putting them one win away from a trip to the NBA finals.
Thunder superstar Kevin Durant (pictured left) was awesome, scoring a team-high 27 points. His All-Star teammate Russell Westbrook was sensational, finishing with a double-double of 23 points and a game-high 12 assists.
James Harden, the third member of OKC’s big three, scored 20, but it was his final three that will make every highlight reel of Game 5. With time winding down in the shot clock, and his team clinging to a 2 point lead, he stepped back and drained a 3 pointer in Kawhi Leonard‘s face.
“The shot clock was running down and I had to make a play,” Harden said in postgame. “Leonard was playing great defense on me. I just shot it with confidence. West Conference finals — that’s a big shot.”
San Antonio was one of the hotter teams in NBA history less than a week ago, having won 20 games in a row and holding court with a 2-0 series lead. Now they’re on the verge of elimination, having lost 3 straight to the young, athletic, and wildly entertaining Thunder.
Manu Ginobili was nearly unstoppable, even in defeat. The Spurs forward scored a game-high 34 points in a rare start. However, with less than 15 seconds in regulation and down 3, OKC’s defense was exceptional, preventing the Spurs from getting a clean look and forcing Ginobili into an off balance three point attempt. He came up short, allowing the Thunder to seal Game 5 in their favor.
Game 6 now shifts back to Oklahoma City where the Thunder are undeated this postseason. Tip-0ff on Wednesday night is set for 8:00.