Points for Russell Westbrook on an efficient 15 of 26 shooting, plus 6 of 7 free throws, to lead all scorers. He was particularly deadly in the second half, scoring 23 points to keep OKC in the game. The L.A. native was particularly dangerous coming explosively off screens, which Andrew Bynum had deterred successfully since Game 2; doing so is very tiring, however, and Westbrook gained steam in the second half as Bynum tired. “It was an amazing win,” he summarized. “We kept fighting for each other.”
Field goal attempts for Kobe Bryant, who made 12 while being forced into a bevy of tough looks in the final six minutes. He was fantastic in the third quarter, willing L.A. to a double digit lead, but couldn’t find the hole in the fourth. After 18 free throw attempts in Game 3, all of which he made, he converted 14 of 17 in this one to help him reach 38 points, the 87th time he’s been at least to 30 in the playoffs (second only to Michael Jordan). He added eight boards and five assists, but will remember only the fact that L.A. lost one it had to have.
L.A.’s biggest lead of the fourth quarter and the game, coming on Jordan Hill’s put-back with 8:03 to play. But Derek Fisher, who was otherwise quiet throughout the evening, answered with a three to trim the lead back to 10, which Thunder coach Scott Brooks said was critical to the team’s confidence.
Total points for Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol in the second half, after Bynum alone had 14 in the first half. L.A.’s inability to get the ball inside especially down the stretch, whether the fault of the bigs for not getting open/being aggressive or the perimeter players for not finding ways to get the ball inside and settling for contested jumpers. Either way, it didn’t work for the Lakers.
Free throws missed by the Lakers, a killer in a 3-point game, after they missed only one on the previous night.
Three-pointers hit by Metta World Peace on eight attempts, including two at the start of the fourth quarter that helped push L.A.’s lead to a game-high 13 points. He finished with 14 points, six boards and two steals.
To reiterate the point that LAL’s big men were tired: Bynum and Gasol had only two rebounds apiece in the second half, while Durant alone had seven in that time. Bynum finished with 18points, nine boards, four assists, three blocks and two steals, Gasol a quiet 10 points, five boards, three blocks and two assists.
More fast break points for the Lakers than OKC, not something one might expect, but L.A. had only two in the second half.