Westbrook Guides OKC Past Toronto

Sunday, January 6th 2013, 4:40 pm
By: News 9

It's been a while since the Thunder has put one in the win column north of the border but Oklahoma City took care of Toronto with relative ease on Sunday.

The Thunder beat the Raptors 104-92 for its first win at the Air Canada Centre since March 19, 2010, and improved to 23-1 this season when it eclipses the 100-point barrier.

Russell Westbrook kept up his stellar play from the past few games, proving too tough a task to handle for Toronto's point guard tandem of Jose Calderon and Kyle Lowry.

Westbrook led OKC with 23 points, seven assists and three steals.

Kevin Durant scored 22 points on 6-of-11 shooting and converted on eight of his nine opportunities from the foul line. Durant also picked up his sixth technical foul of the season in the fourth quarter after getting only five all of last season.

Oklahoma City took a two-point lead into halftime after Toronto went on a torrid shooting streak in the second quarter spearheaded by Amir Johnson and Alan Anderson, who had outstanding performances for the Raptors on Sunday. The two Raptors scored 33 of the team's 50 first-half points on 14-of-15 shooting. Anderson was particularly hot for Toronto coming off the bench to score a game-high 27 points on 10-of-14 shooting , including 4-for-8 from 3. Johnson added 19 points on 8-of-11 shooting.

But the Thunder, in typical OKC fashion, outscored the Raptors by nine in the third quarter. The Thunder went on a 9-0 run in the middle of the quarter to turn a one-point lead into a 10-point advantage that eventually swelled to 15 points and seemed to suck a lot of the energy out of Toronto.

The Thunder played even with the Raptors for the remainder of the game, outscoring them 26-25 in the fourth despite playing the reserves for the final four minutes.

Serge Ibaka was huge for OKC in this one, scoring 19 points on 8-of-12 shooting with eight rebounds and two blocks. Kevin Martin had difficulty connecting on his outside shot, as evidenced by his 1-for-6 performance from 3, but still managed to score 16 points.

Nick Collison nearly had a double-double with 10 points and eight rebounds in 21 minutes.

This was a quietly impressive road win for the Thunder, who topped a Toronto team that entered as winners of eight of their past 10 games.

With the victory, the Thunder stayed atop the Western Conference standings at 26-7 overall and improved to 9-4 on the road. Toronto fell to 12-22 overall and 8-7 at home.

The Thunder swept the season series, having already beaten the Raptors at Chesapeake Energy Arena 108-88 on Nov. 4.

Oklahoma City will wrap up its two-game road trip on Monday when it faces the 4-27 Washington Wizards at 6 p.m.