NBA Game Summary - Oklahoma City at Phoenix
(Saturday, March 14th)
Final Score: Phoenix 106, Oklahoma City 95
Phoenix, AZ (Sports Network) - Leandro Barbosa scored 12 of his 22 points in the fourth quarter as the Suns put the brakes on an ugly six-game losing streak with a 106-95 win over the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Steve Nash made up for an uncharacteristic seven turnovers with 18 points and eight assists for Phoenix, which has dropped the Seattle/Oklahoma City franchise in nine straight meetings.
Grant Hill provided 16 points and eight rebounds, while Shaquille O'Neal and Matt Barnes donated 12 and 10 points, respectively, for the victors.
"We played OK -- it wasn't one of our best games -- but we just gutted it out in the second half," O'Neal said. "(Gentry) kind of got on us in the first half, but we picked it up a little bit. (Barbosa) hit some incredible shots, (Nash) hit some incredible shots, and we came away with the win."
Oklahoma City star forward Kevin Durant returned from a seven-game absence due to an ankle injury to post a team-high 22 points. Russell Westbrook's 20 points, six rebounds and seven assists were overshadowed by his eight turnovers for the Thunder, who went 5-2 without Durant in their lineup.
"I felt good -- I was a little winded at first -- but when I got my second wind, I was all right," Durant said. "I wanted to play more, but I just have to easily get back into it. I was happy to be back out there."
Hill's jumper gave the Suns their first lead of the game with under a minute to play in the third quarter, which ended knotted at 72-all.
It was nip-and-tuck throughout the fourth until Barbosa erupted for eight quick points, ending the flurry with back-to-back three-pointers for a 96-87 cushion with 4:12 left.
Westbrook's two free throws had Oklahoma City within 101-93 with two minutes to play, but O'Neal's two makes at the stripe followed by Nash's trey sealed the Suns' much-needed victory.
Phoenix struggled offensively in the first quarter, digging itself a 27-18 deficit. The Thunder continued to lead throughout the half, holding a 52-46 edge at the intermission.
Phoenix hasn't lost seven straight games since an eight-game skid from February 4-22, 2004...Jeff Green notched 17 points and 10 rebounds for the Thunder, while Thabo Sefolosha ended with 11 points and eight boards in the loss.
03/15 01:43:12 ET