Durant scores 38 points but Suns beat Thunder
PHOENIX (AP) — Kevin Durant scored 38 points, surpassing Michael Jordan with his 41st consecutive game of 25 or more, but the Phoenix Suns got 26 points from Goran Dragic and 24 from Gerald Green to beat the Oklahoma City Thunder 122-115 Sunday night.
Durant has the third-longest such streak in NBA history and longest since Oscar Robertson did it for 46 in a row in the 1963-64 season.
P.J. Tucker scored a career-high 22 points, including a career-best four 3-pointers, Eric Bledsoe added 18 points, and the Suns pulled a game ahead of Memphis for the No. 8 playoff spot in the West. Phoenix is a half-game behind No. 7 Dallas.
Russell Westbrook had 33 points and eight assists for the Thunder, who are a game up on the Los Angeles Clippers for the No. 2 spot in the West.
Oklahoma City took its final lead, 112-111, on Durant’s two free throws with 2:39 to play.
Phoenix scored the next 10, the first four by Markieff Morris and the last four on free throws by Bledsoe, to lead 121-112 with 20.7 seconds to play. Durant sank a 3-pointer with 12.9 seconds to go, the only Thunder field goal in the final 3:49.
After struggling at the line all night, Phoenix made its last eight free throws.
The Suns led by as many as 14 points in the third quarter, the last time at 85-71 on Green’s 14-footer with 6:10 left, and were up 92-83 after consecutive layups by Dragic and Bledsoe with 4:04 left.
But the Thunder outscored the Suns 8-2 the rest of the quarter, Durant’s driving dunk with 13 seconds left cut Phoenix’s lead to 94-91 after three.
Durant and Nick Collison scored to start the fourth quarter and Oklahoma City led for the first time since the first quarter, 95-94, with 11:06 to play.
The lead bounced back and forth after that. Tucker’s reverse layup put Phoenix up 111-110 with 1:52 to go.
Marcus Morris sank a pair of jumpers in a 12-4 run that put Phoenix up 38-29 early in the second quarter.
Oklahoma City cut it to 44-41 on Reggie Jackson’s driving layup, but Tucker sank a 3, Dragic converted a three-point play then scored on another drive and the Suns were back up 52-43 with 3:53 to go and led 62-53 at the break.
NOTES: Dragic scored all 19 of his first-half points in the second quarter, Green scored 17 in the second half. … Phoenix plays four of its final five games on the road. Its home game is against Memphis on April 14. … Wilt Chamberlain scored at least 25 points in all 80 games of the 1961-62 season.