Behind improved play from its bench, the Oklahoma City Thunder posted a 111-102 victory over the Memphis Grizzlies in Game 2 of the Western Conference semifinals Tuesday night at Oklahoma City Arena.
A game after the bench scored a combined 16 points, James Harden scored 21 himself and the bench as a whole poured in 48, including 15 from Eric Maynor.
After falling behind 4-0 early, the Thunder stormed back, taking a 28-17 lead on James Harden's double-pump 3-pointer just before the buzzer.
The lead would grow to as many as 13 in the third quarter before the Grizzlies put together a run late in the quarter to get within six, 74-68 on a three-point play by O.J. Mayo.
Maynor hit two 3-pointers and Harden scored seven during a 15-5 run to start the fourth period that pushed Oklahoma City's lead to 91-73. Daequan Cook added a 3-pointer later in the period to make it 97-76 and it appeared Oklahoma City was going to make the game a laugher.
Memphis outscored the Thunder 22-to-7 over the next seven minutes to pull within six on Tony Allen's free throws with 46 seconds left, but the Thunder hit 7-of-8 at the free throw line down the stretch to seal the win.
Kevin Durant led the Thunder with 26 points while Russell Westbrook added 24.
Mike Conley led Memphis with 24. Zach Randolph, who lit up the Thunder for 34 points in game one, was limited to 15 points on just 2-of-13 shooting.
One worry for the Thunder is the status of Serge Ibaka. Ibaka appeared to twist his ankle with 2:09 remaining and limped off the court and to the locker room. The diagnosis of the injury isn't known, but Ibaka has said he should be fine for Saturday's game three in Memphis.
Game time for Saturday's contest is 4 p.m. and the game will be televised on ESPN.
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