SACRAMENTO (Sporting Alert) — Russell Westbrook scored 32 points and Kevin Durant added 26 and the Oklahoma City Thunder beat the Sacramento Kings 104-92 on Tuesday night.
Westbrook also had seven assists and four steals, while Anthony Morrow collected 10 points off the bench for the Thunder (12-13), who have now won seven straight games and nine in the last 10.
The return of Durant and Westbrook have certainly turned things around for Oklahoma City, which is now a half-game behind New Orleans for a playoffs spot in the Western Conference.
Rudy Gay shined brightest for the Kings (11-14) with 22 points and six rebounds, with Carl Landry finishing with 14 points off the bench and Ramon Sessions had 11 in the same role.
Sacramento has now lost four games in a row as the struggle without star center DeMarcus Cousins, who is out with viral meningitis continues.
The Kings are 2-8 in its last 10 games and fell to 6-8 at home.
With his performance on Tuesday night, Westbrook, who went 11 of 20 in shooting, became the first player in NBA history to average 25 points in under 30 minutes for the first 10 games of a season, according to Elias Sports.
The Thunder got off to a fast start after picking the Kings off a couple of times to score the opening nine points of the contest. The visitors led 61-54 halftime.
Oklahoma City will next play the Golden State Warriors in their next game on Thursday, while Sacramento is at home against the Milwaukee Bucks.
In another game on Tuesday night, the Dallas Mavericks used a big first quarter and a 53 point second half to seal a 107-87 victory over the New York Knicks.
Dirk Nowitzki paced the Mavericks with 16 points, Monta Ellis had 14 and Tyson Chandler finished with 14 rebounds and eight points on his return to New York in the win.
Carmelo Anthony scored a game-high 26 points, five assists, five rebounds and a season-high four steals to lead the Knicks (5-22), which suffered its 12th loss in 13 games.
“I thought the start was not the right way to start a professional basketball game,” said New York coach Derek Fisher, who pulled all five of the Knicks’ starters after a poor start to the game.
“Those guys that were in there to start the game, that was a disappointment to their teammates.”
Elsewhere, the Golden State Warriors had its 16-game winning streak snapped by Memphis, following a 105-98 results in favor of the Grizzlies, while the Miami Heat beat the Brooklyn Nets, 95-91 and the Washington Wizards got past the Minnesota Timberwolves, 109-95.
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Memphis Grizzlies 105 (20-4), Golden State Warriors 98 (21-3)
Washington Wizards 109 (18-6), Minnesota Timberwolves 95 (5-19)
Dallas Mavericks 107 (18-8), New York Knicks 87 (5-22)
New Orleans Pelicans 119 (12-12), Utah Jazz 111 (6-19)
Miami Heat 95 (12-13), Brooklyn Nets 91 (10-13)
Oklahoma City Thunder 104 (12-13) – Sacramento Kings 92 (11-14)