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Durant, Thunder down Celts
Oklahoma City, OK (Sports Network) - A trip to the Alamo with a chance to pull even atop the Western Conference awaits for the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Kevin Durant tallied 23 points and 11 rebounds in the Thunder's 91-79 win over the Boston Celtics.
At 47-16, Oklahoma City is chasing the San Antonio Spurs for the top seed in the west. The Thunder have won eight of their last nine tilts and can pull even for the top spot with a win against the Spurs Monday.
Russell Westbrook added 15 points in the victory.
Jeff Green finally made his initial appearance in Oklahoma City since the Thunder shipped him to Boston in the Kendrick Perkins trade on Feb. 24, 2011. He missed the following season after open heart surgery, but finally returned and netted just eight points on 2-of-11 shooting.
Paul Pierce recorded 20 points for the Celtics, who had their five-game winning streak snapped.
"I thought our shot selection was awful. We missed some open shots and we got stuck a lot on one side of the floor," Celtics head coach Doc Rivers said.
Boston, which trailed 68-65 heading into the fourth, went just 4-of-22 in the final frame.
"I thought our fourth-quarter defense was as good as it can get," OKC head coach Scott Brooks said.
An 11-2 Thunder flurry to begin the fourth propelled the hosts to a 79-67 cushion. Stephen Jackson had six points during the run, which was capped on Kevin Martin's three-point play with 8:36 to go.
The Celtics never cut the deficit below eight the rest of the way.
Earlier, the contest was knotted at 23-23 after a quarter of play before OKC outscored the visitors 27-23 to take a 50-46 edge into the break.
Kevin Garnett finished with 10 points and 11 boards for Boston ... Martin chipped in 12 points off the bench ... The Celtics shot just 37.7 percent (29- of-77) from the floor.
03/10 18:24:23 ET
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