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Nerlens Noel on developing alley-oop chemistry with different guards: “I just keep telling them, ‘Throw the ball up. I’m going to go get it.’” pic.twitter.com/aDiJILWJKe
The Peach Bowl should have only lasted 40 seconds tbh
SGA on youth-heavy lineups meshing tonight: “I think we’re all unselfish and want to win at the end of the day. ...” pic.twitter.com/JBoLoplF0x
Final: Thunder 119, Blazers 106
Paul 30-4-7 (11-of-15 FGs)
SGA 22-10-5 (9-of-17)
Bazley 9 p, 13 r
Shout out to Portland's Gary Trent on his 21st birthday, dropping 30 points on 12-of-18, 5-of-9 from 3. Trent balled in C.J. McCollum's absence.
SGA with a couple of airballed 3-pointers tonight. Otherwise, he was lights out on offense. 22-10-5 and put on a clinic as the primary ballhandler in PnR in the second quarter.
Not saying (at all) that the Thunder is a better offensive team without Danilo Gallinari. They aren't + lot of factors in play tonight. Blazers' defense isn't good.
But the pace and physicality the Thunder plays with without Gallinari is very apparent, sometimes overwhelming.
Chris Paul has been absolutely brilliant, start to finish(ing): 30 points on 11-15 shooting, 7 assists. First quarters have been an issue for OKC and he was aggressive from tip-off, setting a much better time.
Nerlens Noel's jersey is in the rafters because he's still in it and he's still up there somewhere
Deonte Burton has had an excellent end of the third quarter and start of the fourth on both ends. His best game in a while.
Disruptive on defense and really controlled around the basket with his finishing a cutter. Six points in the fourth.
No way for commoners like me to look up how many of Dort's two-way days have been used (he gets up to 45 during the G-League season). But gotta think he's a candidate to get a full NBA deal at some point. See Burton last season.
Dennis Schroder didn't have any points with 2:27 left in the third quarter.
Schroder has 10 of the Thunder's last 15.
Steven Adams looks like he's limping a bit after that foul, but he's staying in.
End of the third quarter: Thunder 87, Blazers 77
Noel 11 p, 2 r
Bazley 7 p, 12 r
End 3Q | Thunder 87, Blazers 77
Paul 28p, 3r, 4a
SGA 19p, 7r, 5a
Steven Adams could have been a quarterback.
Darius Bazley keeps trying Hassan Whiteside and it's not working.
Billy Donovan calls a good "Billy Donovan Timeout" after Dame comes down and misses a wide-open 3.
Lillard is 0-of-5 in the third. Dort and Adams back in.
Career-high 11 rebounds for Darius Bazley with a quarter and a half to go.
Technical foul for Nerlens Noel, upset he didn't earn a jump ball for tying up Whiteside.
Technical foul on a Blazers' assistant coach.
Official Natalie Sago only called him "Jim" to the scorer's table, so the scorer's table only announced said coach as "... Jim."
Halftime | Thunder 64, Blazers 57
Paul 21p, 3r, 4a
SGA 12p, 5a
Halftime: Thunder 64, Blazers 57
Paul 21 (7-of-9 FGs, 3-of-4 3's), 3 r, 4 a
Bazley 6 p, 6 r
Dame 24 p (7-of-12)
Thunder already with as many points in the paint (34) as last night against the Heat.
Chris Paul Rip Move of the Night sponsored by Anfernee Simons.
Shai's cookin in PnR.
Dame's going for 40.
The lineup of Nerlens Noel plus a bunch of guys ages 19-21 just pulled off the most electric sequence of the game.
Nerlens Noel and a bunch of kids out there for the Thunder is a great energy lineup. Dort (20), SGA (21), Bazley (19), Diallo (21).
Three possessions, six points, all at the rim.
Thunder kinda sloppy in this second quarter until the last two possessions. Blazers playing Melo at center. Chris Paul can get any of the Blazers' young guys or Melo in PnR.
Thunder 43-37, 6:58 2nd. Dame checking back in.
Nerlens Noel is picking apart this shorthanded Blazers defense with Melo playing center.
End of the first quarter: Thunder 32, Blazers 24. Much better start for the Thunder after some ugly first quarters the last week.
Bazley 4 p, 3 r (4-of-4 FTs)
Dort 4 p (1-of-2 3's)
End 1Q | Thunder 32, Blazers 24
Paul 12p, 2r, 2a
SGA 8p, 2a
Chris Paul Rip Move of the Night sponsored by Mario Hezonja.
Lu Dort is everywhere: taking charges, drawing defensive fouls and making 3s.
Billy Donovan challenged the foul call on Lu Dort. It was unsuccessful. Lillard goes to the line.
Dort Show: Billy Donovan wants to challenge the last foul call on Dort, who received a late whistle after Dame got him in the air on a pump fake.
Luguentz Dort on the court less than two minutes and he's drawn two offensive fouls (Dame, Melo).
Dort on Dame
Dort draws an offensive foul on Dame on his first possession in.
Lu Dort headed to the scorers table to check in early, with the Thunder shorthanded and on the second back-to-back
Chris Paul with 10 of the Thunder's 20 points in the first 5 1/2 minutes, perfect from the field (4-of-4). Paul typically probes and defers more the first quarter, but clearly trying to start the Thunder off quickly tonight.
There's the aggression, @MikyBerra.
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander pass fake dot gif
Chris Paul is playing like he took the Thunder's recent slow starts personally.
Chris Paul in pregame addressing the crowd ahead of MLK Day. This is the Thunder’s last home game before Monday. pic.twitter.com/bqmyg5x6Eh
Justin Patton (illness) is a late scratch, the Thunder announce.
Chris Paul gave the MLK Day address: pic.twitter.com/3FOWiID1fR
Justin Patton (illness) is a late scratch for the Thunder.
Melo back. pic.twitter.com/07ZtnxieKL
Judging from the greeting Damian Lillard got from Thunder fans (boos), they remember The Shot.