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Monday Bolts – 5.12.14

Monday Bolts – 5.12.14
BoltsLogoNew1Marc Spears of Yahoo Sports

: “Even with the blown lead, the Thunder still had a chance to win or tie the game at the end of regulation. After a missed lay-in by Griffin, Thunder guard Thabo Sefolosha ended up with the ball and had Durant and Westbrook open and streaking down the court. Oklahoma City had no timeouts. Sefolosha chose Westbrook, who attempted a decent 25-foot 3-pointer for the win that was lightly contested by Collison. Westbrook’s shot didn’t fall and he jumped in the air and yelled and cursed afterward while the Clippers celebrated.”

Samer Kalef of Deadspin: “There were brain farts on both sides. OKC had no timeouts left when it needed one—that’s on coach Scott Brooks—and no one fouled a Clipper to force free throws with a little over 24 seconds remaining. Los Angeles could have kept possession until the last second before tossing up any shot that hit rim to close out the game, but for some reason, Blake Griffin attempted a layup (that missed) with substantial time left, and a Thunder player got the rebound. Fortunately for the Clips, OKC had no timeouts left to draw up a final play, leading to the long Westbrook three. There were errors on both sides, but the Clippers squeaked out the comeback to force a Game 6, at the very least.”

KD’s mom on SportsCenter talking about the speech.

Anthony Slater: “With Durant towering over Paul, OKC coach Scott Brooks and the Thunder continually tried to exploit the height mismatch in the mid-post. They sent him down to that right elbow, in the same spot where Durant had hit a dagger fadeaway over Paul two nights before. But this time, Paul played him with a bit more of a frantic, disruptive style. And as he did so, Rivers dialed up a variety of double-teams from different angles. Durant struggled to adjust to the new defender and swarming scheme. He turned it over three times in the fourth, including a crucial mistake with three minutes left, and the Thunder offense stalled.”

Serge Ibaka on his low blow to Blake Griffin: “No punch thrown, man. Both players, we just like to play physical. If you see the replay, it wasn’t a punch thrown. It was like in traffic, and one of my teammates push me from the back, then I try to fall and he was up already.”

Berry Tramel: “And now a series that would have been all but over has gone from a marathon to a sprint. A three-game series. The Thunder has homecourt advantage. But the Clippers have the mental edge, knowing they won Game 1 in a rout and Game 4 in what should have been a Thunder rout. If the Thunder loses this series, Game 4 will no longer be hard to stomach. It will be impossible to forget.”

Ben Golliver of SI.com: “Certainly, Collison and the Clippers did well to create opportunities for themselves. The grim post-game faces worn by Durant and Russell Westbrook, along with their curt answers to questions, made it clear that they understood they had just blown a golden opportunity to seize control of the series. After starting the game at their best — with Durant and Westbrook attacking, and the role players filling in nicely — the Thunder finished the game at their worst, with the offense stalling and the two All-Stars finding themselves simultaneously doing too much and not enough.”