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Thunder travel to Phoenix to face Suns
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Oklahoma City Thunder will carry a three-game winning streak into US Airways Center Thursday night when they face the Phoenix Suns.
The Thunder finished a six-game homestand in style with the three straight wins, although the residency began poorly. OKC dropped three in a row at home for the first time in almost five years. The Thunder have their next two on the road, where they've won two straight.
On Tuesday, the Thunder made quick work of the Philadelphia 76ers, winning 125-92 at Chesapeake Energy Arena.
Though neither one played the fourth quarter, Kevin Durant had 42 points and Russell Westbrook recorded a triple-double for the Thunder.
Durant, who also grabbed nine rebounds, was 14-of-20 from the field and 12- of-18 from the foul line while Westbrook tallied 13 points, 14 assists and 10 rebounds in the first three quarters.
Technically, Westbrook's triple-double came in 20:17, which is the second- quickest time to register a triple-double in NBA history.
"It's crazy," acknowledged Westbrook. "I'm just trying to get my groove back. I'm blessed to be able to do that in such a short amount of time. It was fun."
Reggie Jackson and Serge Ibaka added 14 points apiece for the Thunder. Ibaka also sat the entire fourth quarter with the win well in hand.
Caron Butler made his Thunder debut after leaving the Milwaukee Bucks and signing with the championship contenders. Butler scored two points in 25:42 and received a long standing ovation when he checked in during the first quarter.
"That was unbelievable," Butler said. "I didn't expect that. I didn't know how to feel, I was just excited to be back out there playing."
The Thunder will visit the Los Angeles Lakers on Sunday.
The Suns will complete a four-game homestand. Phoenix is 2-1 on this stay, although the loss came in the last outing, a 104-96 setback to the LA Clippers.
Gerald Green supplied 17 points, eight rebounds and five assists, while P.J. Tucker gave 18 points and 10 boards for Phoenix, which has dropped four of its last six.
Goran Dragic was held to 14 points and Marcus Morris added 12 points off the bench.
The Suns held an 11-point lead at the half, but a 37-18 third quarter for the Clippers helped put the game away.
"I thought we played pretty good defense for three of the quarters, just one quarter killed us. At least it is better than the last five games because I am not sure we had many quarters that were good defensively. We battled," said Suns coach Jeff Hornacek.
Leandro Barbosa broke his hand in the LA loss and could miss the remainder of the regular season.
The Suns head out for two straight on the road following Thursday night.
This could be a first-round playoff preview. The Thunder lead the Western Conference by 1 1/2 games over the San Antonio Spurs and the Suns are tied for the eighth spot with the Dallas Mavericks.
Oklahoma City has owned this matchup recently, winning 11 straight and six in a row in Phoenix.
03/06 09:26:35 ET