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Thunder get revenge, edge Grizzlies
Memphis, TN (SportsNetwork.com) - The Memphis Grizzlies took advantage of Russell Westbrook's torn meniscus in last year's Western Conference semifinals and defeated the Oklahoma City Thunder in five games.
Memphis, though, was the team shorthanded this time.
Westbrook had 27 points, nine assists and six rebounds as the Thunder defeated the Grizzlies 116-100 on Wednesday night.
"He sets the tone for us and our guys do a great job following his lead," OKC head coach Scott Brooks said of Westbrook.
The Thunder defeated the Houston Rockets in the opening round despite losing Westbrook in Game 2, but lost four straight in the semis after taking Game 1.
Kevin Durant added 18 points and six rebounds for OKC, which has won 12 of its last 13 games. Jeremy Lamb scored 18 points off the bench in the triumph.
Mike Conley netted 20 points to go with nine assists and Zach Randolph donated 17 points and eight boards for the Grizzlies, who continue to play without star center Marc Gasol due to a sprained MCL and guard Tony Allen due to a hip injury. Memphis is also missing forward Ed Davis (ankle) and swingman Quincy Pondexter (right foot).
"I thought we gave them too many easy baskets," Conley admitted. "They're too good of a team offensively to give up the easy plays and I think that's where we kind of lost the game."
Westbrook netted 10 quick points as the Thunder raced out to a 21-11 start before Randolph put in six points during a 9-2 Memphis flurry to get the hosts within 23-20 late in the first.
The game was played within a five-point window from there until OKC went on a huge surge before the conclusion of the half.
The Thunder led 25-22 after a quarter of play and Westbrook capped a 15-3 OKC swing with a pull-up triple to make it 55-40 late in the second.
OKC took a 57-42 spread into the break and led by as many as 24 in the third before settling for an 89-73 cushion heading into the fourth, where the Thunder coasted to the easy win.
Thunder guard Andre Roberson started in place of Thabo Sefolosha, who missed Tuesday's game due to a right knee sprain ... OKC shot 56.3 percent (40-of-71) from the floor.
12/12 01:53:06 ET