Durant’s Passing a Problem for Spurs?
And yet (Kevin) Durant’s fourth-quarter flurry isn’t what should worry the Spurs most. It’s what he did during the first two quarters that gave everyone pause. Then Durant took what the Spurs gave him, attempting just four shots as he set up the Thunder’s big men with dump-offs and kick-out passes. When Kendrick Perkins wasn’t dunking over the Spurs’ heads, Serge Ibaka was burying 18-footers over them. With Russell Westbrook also holstering his own shot for the greater good, the Thunder’s offense settled into a smooth, easy flow. Everyone touched the ball, everyone found their rhythm.
Ibaka would go on to make all 11 of his shots, one shy of the NBA’s 37-year-old playoff record for perfection, and he found his stroke in those first two quarters when Durant pulled all his teammates’ strings. Durant’s 36 points were magical, but so were his eight assists.
“It picks the whole team up,” Thunder forward Nick Collison said. “It’s easier for those of us who are less-talented scorers to play with confidence.”