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NBA: Thunder dominate Celtics without Durant, Westbrook

Agence France-Presse
No Durant, no Westbrook? No problem, as the Thunder rolled past the Celtics behind Serge Ibaka's 21 points.

BOSTON – Oklahoma City shrugged off the absence of red-hot scorer Kevin Durant on Friday as they rolled to a 101-83 NBA rout of the Boston Celtics.

Serge Ibaka scored 21 points for the Thunder, leading five Oklahoma City players in double points as the Western Conference leaders proved themselves capable of coping without their two biggest stars — Most Valuable Player candidate Durant and Russell Westbrook.

Durant, who has scored 30-plus points in nine straight games, injured his right shoulder in Wednesday’s victory over San Antonio.

Westbrook has been sidelined since knee surgery in late December and isn’t expected back until February.

STORM SERGE. Oklahoma City Thunder forward Serge Ibaka, shown dunking the ball over Houston Rockets center Omer Asik during a game last April, led the Thunder with 21 points against Boston. Photo by Aaron Sprecher/EPA

Jeremy Lamb provided 19 points off the bench and Reggie Jackson added 14 points and eight assists in the Thunder’s sixth straight triumph.

Perry Jones made his third career start in Durant’s place and scored 10 points and Thabo Sefolosha had 13 points for the Thunder.

Former Thunder forward Jeff Green led the Celtics with 16 points. Rajon Rondo returned from a one-game hiatus and handed out eight assists.

Oklahoma City led 50-46 at halftime and stretched their lead to double digits in the third quarter.

The Celtics missed eight shots in a row in one stretch in the third, and trailed by as many as 22 points.

Boston, who had led 28-27 at the end of the first quarter, never threatened in the final period. – Rappler.com

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