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(Sunday, March 30th)
Final Score: Oklahoma City 116, Utah 96
Oklahoma City, OK (SportsNetwork.com) - Kevin Durant poured in a game-high 31 points to go along with nine assists as he led the Oklahoma City Thunder to a 116-96 rout of the Utah Jazz on Sunday.
Durant has now scored 25 or more points in his last 38 games. This streak represents the most consecutive 25-plus point games since Michael Jordan had 40 straight games during the 1986-87 season. Durant last failed to score 25 or more points on Jan. 5 against Boston.
Russell Westbrook added 19 points and Serge Ibaka chipped in 17 points with six rebounds for the Thunder, who have won six of seven. Caron Butler contributed 15 points off the bench, going 5-for-5 from beyond the arc.
Enes Kanter led the way for the Jazz with 18 points and 12 boards and Richard Jefferson added 17 points as Utah lost again on the road. The Jazz haven't won a road game since March 8 when they beat the Philadelphia 76ers, dropping five straight as the guest.
Gordon Hayward scored 16 and Alec Burks had 12 points off the bench in defeat.
The Thunder scored the first 11 points of the game and held Utah to a 4-for-21 effort from the floor in the first quarter to help create a 26-9 spread after 12 minutes.
"The defense really set the tone in the first quarter. Nine points, that's hard to do. That set the tempo right there," said Thunder head coach Scott Brooks.
Oklahoma City never looked back, despite Utah more than tripling its scoring output from the first quarter with 31 points in the second. The Thunder led by as many as 25 in the first half by shooting 56.8 percent (21-for-37) from the floor.
"Just coming out with a defensive mind set, once again I think we did a good job doing of just worrying about what we do and not worrying about who were playing just going out and playing our brand of basketball," said Westbrook.
Utah trailed 59-40 to open the second half, but after seeing its deficit swell to 28 with 3 1/2 minutes left in the third, the Jazz went on a 19-3 tear. The burst brought the visitors within 12, but Durant knocked down a triple to end the quarter and send OKC into the fourth with a 92-77 lead.
"They were aggressive on the defensive end. We settled for a lot of jump shots and missed a lot of jump shots. They come out and they try to bury you right from the beginning and they had a lot of success with that in the first quarter," said Jazz head coach Ty Corbin.
The Jazz got within 15 in the fourth, but a quick 8-1 spurt from OKC pushed the margin to 22, allowing the Thunder to cruise to victory down the stretch.
The Thunder have won six straight at home against the Jazz ... Oklahoma City hasn't lost at home since falling to the Dallas Mavericks on March 16 ... The Thunder shot 55.4 percent (41-for-74) from the floor while Utah made 41.9 percent (36-for-86) of its field goals.
03/30 22:13:01 ET