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NBA Preview from The Sports Network



Thursday, December 31st (All times eastern)

Utah Jazz (18-13) at Oklahoma City Thunder (17-14), 8 p.m.

(Sports Network) - Kevin Durant will try to lead the Oklahoma City Thunder to their fifth consecutive victory tonight, when they play host to the Northwest Division-rival Utah Jazz at the Ford Center.

Durant has scored 30 or more points in five straight games and is averaging 34.6 ppg over that stretch. In Tuesday's 110-98 victory at Washington, Durant led the charge with 35 points and 11 rebounds. He has reached the 30-point mark in nine games this month for the Thunder, who are searching for the franchise's first five-game winning streak since it was located in Seattle during the 2004-05 campaign.

"We're not satisfied, we're not too happy," Durant said. "We know that we're playing pretty decent right now, we've just got to continue to work every day. I think that's the main thing. We can get complacent with what we've done so far."

Jeff Green scored 18 points and Russell Westbrook ended with 11 points, 10 assists and seven rebounds in a winning cause. James Harden netted 11 points for Oklahoma City, which shot 54.4 percent from the field and 10-of-18 from three-point range.

The Thunder are 2 1/2 games off the Northwest lead and own an 8-7 record as the host this season.

Utah, meanwhile, is 1 1/2 games off the pace in the division and is aiming for its third straight win Thursday. Deron Williams led five starters in double figures with 21 points and handed out 12 assists in Wednesday's 107-103 win at Minnesota.

Ronnie Brewer posted 20 points, Mehmet Okur and Carlos Boozer added 16 points apiece and CJ Miles netted 13 points for the Jazz, who are 6-9 away from Salt Lake City this season.

Oklahoma City defeated the Jazz, 104-94, late last month at EnergySolutions Arena, but Utah has won seven of the past nine matchups between the teams.

12/31 10:37:14 ET


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