THE Phoenix Suns spoiled Russell Westbrook’s explosion and frustrated a fatigued Oklahoma City Thunder team to win its second straight game, 118-111, and third victory in a row at home on Friday (Saturday, Manila time).
Phoenix looked like the tired team early as Oklahoma City raced to a 24-12 lead, but the Suns stormed back and took the lead in the second quarter before the game got testy between Westbrook and the Phoenix young guns like Derrick Jones Jr and Marquese Chriss.
The Suns then extended a three-point lead at the half to as much as 14 but the Thunder refused to go away, cutting the gap down to three. Late in the fourth, Phoenix still held a comfortable nine-point lead with less than a minute but OKC again tried to mount a comeback, getting within five but ran out of time.
Six Phoenix players scored in double digits, led by Eric Bledsoe with 18 points. Devin Booker had 17 markers, and TJ Warren added 15. Tyler Ulis, Alan Williams and Leandro Barbosa scored 14 apiece for the Suns (20-42).
Westbrook had his fourth straight 40-point game and was one assist shy from another triple-double as he had 48 points, 17 rebounds and nine dimes. But his efforts went for naught as the Thunder fell to 35-27 with their second straight loss. Alex Abrines scored 13, while Domantas Sabonis and Enes Kanter each had 11.