This is March Madness, NBA-style. The Raptors and Thunder played a doozy of a double-overtime thriller on Friday night, and the apogee of action crescendoed at the end in what should do even more to cement Kevin Durant‘s status as the 2014 MVP. After beating the Cavs with 35 last night, Durant was even better in Toronto, hanging 51 on a tough Raptors team including the game-winner in the second overtime session.
KD started off slow, by his standards, scoring only 13 in the first half on 3-for-12 shooting. But he bettered that total by a point in the third period alone, shooting 4-for-6 for 14 points. He added another 13 in the final period for a total of 39 at the end of regulation even after trading misses with Kyle Lowry in the final minute.
In the first OT, KD continued his accuracy, hitting another three-pointer and going 2-for-3 from the field. But the teams remained deadlocked after another five minutes of free basketball following a Lowry 27-footer with seven-seconds remaining and both Jeremy Lamb and KD missed as the clock expired.
But in the second overtime, John Salmons missed a pair of free throws that would have iced the game with the Raptors leading 118-116 and nine-seconds left. Instead, he left OKC an opening. That’s all this year’s MVP needed to pull-up in front of the 6-9 Amir Johnson and knock down the game-winner.
For the game, Durantula had 51 on 15-for-32 from the field (7-of-12 from deep, 15-for-19 from the free-throw line). He added 12 rebounds, seven assists a steal and a block.
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