Thunder Runs Out of Gas, Falls to Knicks in Melo’s Homecoming

BOX SCORE

The Oklahoma City Thunder fell below .500 yet again after losing to the New York Knicks on Saturday night at Madison Square Garden. Michael Beasley scored a game-high 30 points for the Knicks, spoiling Carmelo Anthony’s much-anticipated return to the Big Apple.

Less than 24 hours after a triple-overtime thriller in Philadelphia — and playing without Steven Adams — the Thunder ran out of gas down the stretch. Kristaps Porzingis was inactive due to knee soreness, but his teammates shot 55 percent from the field and hit 14/23 (61 percent) attempts from long range.

Full Highlights:

The Thunder moves to 14-15 on the season and will now return home to Oklahoma City for a Monday night showdown with the Denver Nuggets.


Melo’s Return

Carmelo Anthony received a warm reception in pre-game introductions, as the Knicks welcomed him with a video tribute. That scene:


He got off to a quick start, hitting his first three-point attempt and scoring 7 points in the first quarter. His night got progressively worse from there, as he shot 5/18 from the field and finished with 12 points. He shot just 2/12 after the first quarter and was met with a smattering of boos when he checked-out for the final time.


Russ & PG

Russell Westbrook finished his night with 25 points, 7 rebounds and 7 assists — shooting 9/18 from the floor and 7/10 from the free throw line. He was adequate and the shooting percentage was much better than what he’s shown in recent games.

Paul George wrapped up the evening with 18 points and 9 rebounds on 6/14 shooting (4/7 3P). He was virtually non-existent in the first half, shooting just 1/3 from the floor. His 4/9 in the second half looked much more comfortable but his role in the Thunder offense still appears fairly undefined. He was a team-worst minus-20 in 37 minutes.

The brightest spot in the evening came when Westbrook — who played 52 minutes last night — mustered up the strength to punish a rim in a bone-rattling dunk. The highlight:


Notes

Free Throws. The Thunder shot 12/20 (60 percent) from the free throw line — making it another terrible night from the stripe. The Knicks shot 61 percent from deep and anytime your opponent hits a better percentage of three-pointers than you do free throws, you’re going to have a bad time.

Bease Mode. Michael Beasley lit up the Thunder for 30 points on 11/18 shooting. Courtney Lee chipped in 20 points. All in all, six Knicks reached double-figures in scoring.

2Pat. Patrick Patterson had 12 points for the Thunder and hit 4/6 from downtown. He logged 25 minutes and is becoming a bigger part of the rotation.

More:

  • OKC won 42-35 on the boards and 36-34 on points in the paint
  • The Thunder won 16-6 on the offensive glass
  • The Knicks had 21 assists to OKC’s 18
  • Enes Kanter finished with 10 points and 5 rebounds. Doug McDermott had 13 points on 3/5 shooting from deep.

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Carmelo catches up with former teammates and coaches after the game. Via NBA.

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