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(Thursday, December 27th)
Final Score: Oklahoma City 111, Dallas 105 (OT)
Oklahoma City, OK (Sports Network) - Russell Westbrook scored eight points over the final stages of overtime, including the go-ahead basket with 1:04 left, as the Oklahoma City Thunder halted their first losing streak of the season with a hard-fought 111-105 victory over the Dallas Mavericks at Chesapeake Energy Arena.
Westbrook finished with 16 points and 10 assists, while Kevin Durant poured in 40 points -- 26 of which came in the second half -- to help rally the Thunder from a 10-point deficit with eight minutes remaining in regulation and end a two-game slide.
Serge Ibaka added 19 points and 17 rebounds, and Kevin Martin contributed 18 points off the bench for Oklahoma City, which has now won 11 consecutive home games.
Dallas was dealt a fourth straight defeat and seventh setback in eight outings despite a season-high 32 points from Darren Collison, who hit a desperation 3- pointer as time expired to force overtime. Chris Kaman and Shawn Marion recorded 17 and 14 points, respectively, in the loss.
Dirk Nowitzki, playing his second game since returning from right knee surgery, had nine points and six rebounds in 26 minutes for Dallas, though he shot just 3-of-11 from the field.
"They made some plays and we made some mistakes, but we were still right there," Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle said. "When we needed one stop, we couldn't get it. When we needed one rebound, we couldn't get it. When we just needed one score we couldn't get it and that's the way this league is, it's tough."
Westbrook had managed just eight points on a miserable 4-of-16 shooting prior to overtime, but took over the game down the stretch. The All-Star guard's late barrage began with a dunk off a Thabo Sefolosha feed that pulled the Thunder within 104-103 with 2:27 left in extra time, and his jumper with 1:04 on the clock sent Oklahoma City back in front.
Westbrook then stole an errant pass from O.J. Mayo on the ensuing possession and laid the ball in for a 107-104 Thunder edge, and buried a pair of key free throws after Mayo went 1-of-2 from the line to help seal the win with 20.7 seconds to go.
"That was a heck of a basketball game," Thunder head coach Scott Brooks said. "Our fans were special tonight. They gave it when we really didn't have it tonight."
The Thunder trailed 89-79 four minutes into the fourth quarter following consecutive 3-pointers by the Mavericks' Vince Carter, but sprung to life with a 17-6 spurt to forge ahead. Durant, who netted 11 of those points, capped the flurry with a short turnaround that put Oklahoma City up 96-95 with 1:57 to play.
Two more Durant free throws that came after a Collison miss and a Dallas turnover extended the margin to three with 3.7 seconds left. Following a timeout, Marion threw a cross-court inbound pass to Collison, whose off- balance 25-footer swished through the net just prior to the buzzer sounding to keep Dallas' chances alive.
The Mavericks were ahead by as many as 11 points in the second quarter, but the Thunder fought back to knot the contest at 45-45 when Ibaka sank two free throws 13 seconds into the third period. However, Marion and Collison sparked a 10-0 surge that swung the momentum back in the Mavericks' favor, and the lead grew back to 11 when a Collison triple just over a minute later made the score 58-47.
Dallas took an 81-73 advantage into the fourth quarter after Dominique Jones canned a 3-pointer as the frame expired. The Thunder would draw closer when a Martin trey just over two minutes into the final session pulled them to within 83-79, but Carter's pair of three's within a one-minute span pushed the Mavs' edge back to double digits.
Collison was the game's star early on, dropping in 10 points in the first five-plus minutes as Dallas -- which made good on seven of its initial 11 shots -- jumped out to a 17-10 lead. The Mavericks owned a 29-19 cushion late in the opening period, and went up by a 43-32 count on a 4-point play from Jae Crowder near the midway mark of the second quarter.
Oklahoma City closed out the first half on an 11-2 run, however, to trim the deficit to 45-43 at the break.
Durant has now averaged 36.8 points while shooting 53.8 percent (50-of-93) from the field over his last four games ... Mayo, averaging a team-best 19.3 points per game for Dallas, was held to just four on 1-of-7 shooting while battling a flu bug ... Mavericks guard Roddy Beaubois sat out the contest due to illness ... Oklahoma City, which swept Dallas in four games during last season's Western Conference quarterfinals, has now prevailed in five of the past six regular-season meetings between the clubs ... The Thunder assigned rookie forward Perry Jones along with guard DeAndre Liggins and center Daniel Orton to Tulsa of the NBADL prior to the game.
12/28 02:23:36 ET