KEVIN Durant shot the lights out early then slammed the door shut late, drawing first blood against his former teammate Russell Westbrook, as the Golden State Warriors crushed the erstwhile unbeaten Oklahoma City Thunder, 122-96, to the delight of the crowd at the Oracle Arena on Thursday (Friday, Manila time).
Westbrook and the Thunder got off to a hot start, taking a one point lead after 12 minutes of action, 32-31, but the Warriors stormed back, led by Durant, in the second quarter.
The Warriors started the period with a 10-2 run, and Durant dropped 16 in the quarter, including three triples, to bring a 68-43 lead at the half.
Stephen Curry took over the scoring cudgels for Golden State in the third and Durant again sizzled to close the period as the Warriors built a 29-point lead heading into the fourth.
With Westbrook and the Thunder threatening to start the final frame, Durant took it to the rack and slammed home several highlight dunks to keep OKC out of reach. He headed to the bench with 6:39 left and the Warriors up 109-78, and was welcomed with a standing ovation and chants of ‘KD.’
Durant finished with 39 points, and a personal-best seven-of-11 from beyond the arc. Steph Curry and Klay Thompson added 21 and 18 markers, respectively, for the Warriors to improve to 4-1.
Westbrook struggled from the floor, shooting just 4-of-15, to finish with 20 points. Victor Oladipo led OKC with 21, scoring 13 in the third quarter, as the Thunder suffered their first loss after a 4-0 start.