Okay, being blasted by the Warriors was pretty dire. But at no point that night did Golden State lead 16-0, something the Clippers inflicted upon the Thunder right after tipoff. OKC stabilized, led by six (87-81) a third of the way through the fourth quarter, and then completely went to pieces. And I mean “completely”: the final, a mere 8:36 after that six-point lead, was a sixteen-point loss. Symmetry of this kind we can do without, right? But that’s what happened: Los Angeles 108, Oklahoma City 92, meaning the Clips finished up on a 27-5 run. It didn’t even matter that Paul George fouled out in the waning moments; PG-13 was shooting only 7-27 anyway. (Still better than Dennis Schröder, who was 2-15.) At least the Thunder remembered how to rebound, something they seemed to have forgotten in Oakland.
So it was left for Steven Adams to carry the OKC banner; he got decent numbers — 17 points, 12 rebounds — but still -16 for the night. In fact, every Thunderman was minus for the night except Nerlens Noel (0) and Hamidou Diallo (+1). It’s perhaps a shame we didn’t get to see Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot, who drew a DNP-CD, if only because it would have been fun to have TLC out there with Clippers backup point guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. Just imagine the potential Gilgeousness. (In 22 minutes, Shai had two points, two boards, and four assists.)
Tobias Harris and Danilo Galinari were the starting L.A. forwards, and they earned their pay, each collecting 26 points and Harris sweeping up ten rebounds. Trusty sixth man Lou Williams put up 17. And it didn’t take long to remember “Oh, this is where Patrick Beverley wound up.”
So nothing accomplished on this trip to the West Coast; you don’t see experience points on the box score. Will the Thunder do better in OKC? We’ll find out Sunday, when the already-struggling Sacramento Kings show up at the funky C Arena.