|Date of game: 12/3/2013
Recap: Sacramento vs. Oklahoma City
Sacramento, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Isaiah Thomas put the Kings on his back in the fourth quarter and nearly rallied them from a 17-point deficit against the Thunder.
Thomas scored 21 of his 24 points in the final frame but was short on a 14- footer at the buzzer as Oklahoma City escaped Sleep Train Arena with a 97-95 victory.
Kevin Durant totaled 27 points and 11 rebounds and Russell Westbrook chipped in 15 points, eight rebounds and seven assists in the Thunder's eighth straight win.
"We can never take a win for granted," Durant said. "It's hard to win in this league."
Sacramento dropped its fifth in a row despite five players scoring in double figures.
Oklahoma City shook off a slow start and appeared to pull away with an 18-0 run that bled into the fourth quarter.
Jeremy Lamb, who finished with 14 points, opened the fourth with a runner and two free throws to give the Thunder an 82-65 cushion, but Thomas wouldn't let the Kings go down without a fight.
The reserve guard had seven points during a 13-0 sprint that pulled Sacramento within five, then hit a running hook shot and forced a turnover with under a minute to play before draining a deep jumper that cut the deficit to 97-95
"I was aggressive. We got in the bonus early and I was just in attack mode and my teammates kept finding me," Thomas said.
After Durant missed from long range with time winding down, Thomas nearly lost his dribble before recovering at the right elbow. From there, his fadeaway fell off the rim, and the comeback was denied.
Perhaps looking ahead to Wednesday's showdown with the Northwest Division- leading Trail Blazers, the Thunder came out flat and only scored 19 points in the first quarter.
John Salmons' 3-pointer capped Sacramento's 31-point opening frame, and the Kings stayed in front until Oklahoma City woke up and scored 16 of the final 20 points of the half.
Thabo Sefolosha, Durant and Westbrook all hit from behind the arc during the surge, the last in the final minute to five the visitors a 50-47 edge at the break.Game Notes
The Thunder have won seven straight and 13 of the last 14 against the Kings
... The Kings scored 23 points off 17 turnovers ... Sacramento committed just
eight turnovers ... Ben McLemore, who was named the Western Conference Rookie
of the Month on Tuesday, had 14 points in the loss ... The Kings cap a four-
game homestand Friday against the Lakers.