When they ask, “Is it the shoes?”, it may very well have been in John Wall’s case last night. Only 2 of Wall’s 17 points were in the first half, when he was sporting a pair of red shoes. He decided to switch to white shoes for the second half, and apparently the move made all the difference. 15 points and 7 assists followed after the shoe switch, which kind of goes to show that something as simple as the proper shoes can make all of the difference in your court game.
2-0 to start the game was the only lead the Thunder would see however. It may have only been a 4-point game (39-35) at the half, but in the final minute of the 3rd quarter the Thunder were outscored 10-3. That was just in a one-minute span.
Kendrick Perkins trying to get in Nene’s head wasn’t working either. He quipped back and forth with Nene the whole game, while Nene was dropping 17 points. Perk, on the other hand, went 0-for-3 from the floor, and was held scoreless.
Kevin Durant’s 26 points led all scorers, but it wasn’t good enough to secure the win. Although help wasn’t there for Durant last night the way that it normally is. Serge Ibaka managed 14 points total, while Reggie Jackson could only muster 12 points of his own.
Wall and Nene contributed 17 points apiece, yet were both outscored by Trevor Ariza’s 18. Although, Wall posted a double-double once you count his 15 assists. Marcin Gortat pitched in 14 points, and Martell Webster dropped 10 off of the Wizards bench.
I do feel like fatigue played a part in last night’s loss, but we were the hottest team in the league at that point. A cool-down was inevitable. Now they need to shake this loss off before welcoming the Grizzlies to town tomorrow night. The season series is currently split, as the Thunder took the Dec. 11th matchup 116-100, but dropped the Jan. 14th matchup 90-87 in a game that saw Marc Gasol’s return to the Grizzlies lineup. Tip-off for round 3 is scheduled for 7pm CST and will be broadcast via Fox Sports Oklahoma, WWLS The Sports Animal, and NBA League Pass.