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SPORTS: Oklahoma City Thunder

Thunder Tops Nuggets In Preseason Matchup

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OKLAHOMA CITY -

For the first time this preseason the Oklahoma City Thunder went with its traditional starting five from last season after getting Thabo Sefolosha and Kendrick Perkins back into the lineup and reigning sixth man of the year James Harden resumed his role off the bench.

With the full crew back in the fold, Oklahoma City handled the visiting Denver Nuggets 108-101 at Chesapeake Energy Arena.

The Thunder built a 19-point first-half lead behind strong early performances from Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and Serge Ibaka, but the Nuggets climbed back into the game to take a one-point lead one three occasions early in the fourth quarter.

But the Thunder stuck it out with their reserves, who ended up outlasting Denver down the stretch.

The Thunder finished with a three-way tie for the scoring lead, as Durant, Ibaka and Harden all finished with 16. Westbrook finished with 11 points and nine assists. In their first preseason action, Sefolosha had eight points and four rebounds and Perkins had four points and four boards.

Daequan Cook had 13 points and Reggie Jackson added 10 off the bench.

Danilo Gallinari led Denver with 26 points and Ty Lawson added 17 and 11 assists.

The Thunder plays at Chicago on Tuesday at 7 p.m.

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