Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook missed 36 of their 59 shots during Oklahoma City’s Game 5 loss to the Golden State Warriors, but Durant isn’t apologizing for the aggressiveness of the Thunder’s two stars.
“That’s who we are,” Durant said, via ESPN. “We’ve got to be aggressive. When they’re going in, you won’t say anything. But we happened to miss some tonight. But we were aggressive. We were right there. We had an opportunity to win the basketball game. That’s what we do. That’s how we play, like it or not.”
Durant made just 12-of-31 shots, while Westbrook hit 11-of-28 field goals. The pair combined for 71 points, but the rest of the Thunder roster combined to shoot just 32 times.
Golden State won the game, 120-111, to push the series to Game 6 in Oklahoma City.
Despite Durant and Westbrook missing shots, the Thunder had opportunities to steal the series in Game 5. In fact, late in the fourth quarter, Durant missed a three that would have cut Golden State’s lead to just three points with 35 seconds left. It clanked off the back of the rim and the Warriors collected the rebound, leaving Steph Curry to all but seal the game with two free throws.
Still, Durant and Westbrook combined to score 25 of the Thunder’s 34 points in the fourth quarter.
“But like I said, I make four more shots, Russell make five more shots and you’re not really talking about it, so you can’t say nothing when we miss, but don’t say nothing when we make them,” Durant said.
Durant and Westbrook will always power the Thunder, but Oklahoma City was at its undeniable best in Games 3 and 4 when complementary players such as Andre Roberson and Dion Waiters provided key contributions. In Game 5, Waiters and Roberson combined for just six points. Overall, the Thunder bench was outscored by a 30-13 margin.
Heading back to Oklahoma City for Game 6 could provide a familiar comfort zone for Waiters and Roberson to come back to life.
Either way, we can count on Durant and Westbrook remaining in attack mode. The two are going to take shots; Durant is deadly from anywhere on the floor, and Westbrook can get any look he wants at any time. But will the two stars get more help at home in Game 6?