It's playoff time in Oklahoma and the Thunder are slated to start the 2016 playoffs against the Mavericks in the first round. The two Western Conference teams are no stranger to one another, and have battled a total of four times this season with the Thunder sweeping the series. Here's a breakdown of all four matchups between the two teams:
November 22: Thunder won 117-114
Without the services of Kevin Durant, the Thunder was able to snap the Mavericks’ six-game winning streak by overcoming a double-digit deficit in the third quarter in OKC. Russell Westbrook put up 31 points and dished 11 assists, but had the help of Dion Waiters, Anthony Morrow, Enes Kanter and Nick Collison, who all scored in double-digits. Deron Williams led the Mavericks with 20 points and Wesley Matthews had 18 of his own.
January 13: Thunder won 108-89
While the Thunder was without Durant in the first matchup, OKC was basically without Westbrook in the second battle. The Thunder point guard was ejected after his second technical that stemmed from a scuffle with J.J. Barea earlier in the game. Even though the disagreement started between the two point guards, both Durant and Charlie Villanueva got in involved after Villanueva put his hand on Westbrook’s neck and Durant was defending his comrade.
While the game ultimately had six technical fouls and two ejections, they still played a little bit of basketball. Even though Westbrook didn’t manage to score before his ejection, Durant picked up the load and totaled 29 points and 10 rebounds while Serge Ibaka added 20 points and 11 rebounds.
It’s worth noting that Dallas was without all five of its regular starters at the time after head coach Rick Carlisle opted to have them rest. Barea led the team with 18 points while Salah Mejri scored his first NBA points and finished with 17 in all.
January 22: Thunder won 109-106
Even with both Durant and Westbrook in the lineup, the Mavericks rallied back from a 17-point deficit with less than eight minutes remaining to get within one point, but ultimately came up short. Dallas missed three 3-point attempts in the final 35 seconds as the Thunder picked up its seventh straight win. The Thunder was able to build up the initial lead due to a dominant third quarter where OKC outscored Dallas 37-18.
Durant led the team with 24 points, but OKC’s bench was stellar down the stretch and scored 16 points in the fourth quarter alone. Chandler Parsons led the Mavs with 26 points and Williams added 22 points.
February 25: Thunder won 116-103
After leading by six points entering the frame, the Thunder opened up the final quarter on a 15-to-0 run on its way to snapping a two-game losing streak. Durant and Westbrook each scored 24 points in the win while Dion Waiters scored 11 of his 14 points in the fourth quarter.
Dirk Nowitzki led the Mavs with 33 points while David Lee notched four points in his Dallas debut. Mejri came off the bench to total four blocks.