After losing to the New York Knicks in their last game, the Oklahoma City Thunder were able to get back on track by defeating the Utah Jazz, 90-80. The Thunder came up short in their shoot out with the Knicks, and they seemed to focus more on the defensive side of the ball in their game against the Jazz. The win not only got the Thunder back to their usual winning ways, but it also brought the Thunder within half a game of the top seed in the west.
I’ll admit, this game was not as fun to watch as the game a couple nights ago when the Thunder played the Knicks. This game was slow, controlled and more defensive, but the Thunder got the win, which is what really matters. They also showed they can play defense when they want to.
The Thunder had 48 rebounds, 12 steals and seven blocks in a great defensive effort. Serge Ibaka was his usual defensive-minded self, acquiring eight rebounds and five blocks. Kevin Durant also had a great defensive showing with 12 defensive rebounds, three steals and one block.
After witnessing the great defensive effort from the Thunder, my only question is where is this every night? I honestly believe the Thunder would be almost impossible to defeat if they played great defense like they played against the Jazz on a nightly basis. As you saw the other night when the Thunder played the Knicks, it is very hard to win games if your team allows 125 points. It is not like offense was a problem for the Thunder– I mean, they scored 120 points as well.
My prediction is the Thunder will continue a good, consistent defensive effort once the playoffs begin. There is only one cure to lackadaisical play, and that is the playoffs.