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April 3, 2014

Thunder end Spurs streak in home win

OKLAHOMA CITY — Oklahoma City overturned an early deficit to bring San Antonio’s 20-game winning streak crashing down with a 106-94 win in a battle of the top two in the Western Conference on Thursday.

The Spurs remain on pole position for the top seed in the West, but the win leaves Oklahoma City still with a shot at catching them. The win takes the Thunder to 4-0 against the Spurs this season.

It was a slow start for the Thunder, and star Durant, who continued his streak of games with more than 25 points. He scored 16 of his 28 points in the second half, when the Thunder finally took charge of the game.

Coming off a win on Wednesday against Golden State, the Spurs started the brightest of the two, pinning the Thunder back with an 11 point lead early. One of two threes from Danny Green on the night was followed by a Kawhi Leonard jumper as the Thunder floundered on the other end.

Leonard finished with 17 points, equal with Tim Duncan whose influence faded as the second half wore on. Part of that was down to an increase in defensive intensity by Oklahoma City after halftime.

The Thunder scored 30 points off of 19 Spurs turnovers. Tony Parker, normally one of if not the only top points-producing forces for San Antonio, was held to a measly six points and three assists under pressure from Russell Westbrook.

Westbrook himself finished on 27 points to go with four steals, and Serge Ibaka brought up the rest of the defensive front with a double-double 12 rebounds and 10 points with three blocks.

A bright spot for San Antonio, even as the game petered out, was Patty Mills. Normally averaging just under 10 points a game, Mills went 8-of-13 from the floor and 5-of-7 from three point land to finish on 21 points.

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