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OKC Thunder Reach 2nd Round For First Time Since 2016



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Any NBA participant will preach that closeout video games are the hardest. The whistles get wild, the group will get loopy and the foe is preventing for his or her life. That was the story of Sport 4 in New Orleans. 

With the Oklahoma Metropolis Thunder proudly owning a 3-0 lead over the Pelicans, the Bourbon Avenue boys got here out firing.

The Smoothie King Heart crowd was extra alive than that they had been this season, and the power on the courtroom was there too. The Pelicans flocked to the ball and made life powerful on Oklahoma Metropolis.

A number of no-calls, just a few open missed appears to be like and sloppy segments from the Thunder rapidly turned this sport right into a dogfight with OKC proudly owning a one-point lead at halftime. 

The lone supply of constant offense for Oklahoma Metropolis within the first half was from sophomore sensation Jalen Williams. The No. 12 decide within the 2022 NBA Draft poured in 13 first-half factors to couple with 5 rebounds and two steals earlier than intermission. 

The Santa Clara product completed with 24 factors, eight rebounds, 4 assists and two steals. 

New Orleans got here out on hearth to start out the second half, roaring their technique to a lead as the 2 groups rode the seesaw the whole body. 

After a nip and tuck third quarter, the Pelicans led by a one-point margin heading right into a do-or-die closing body. 

A 12-3 run that spanned the tip of the third quarter and begin of the fourth interval lifted the Pelicans to a 5 level cushion – their largest of the evening. 

Although, an apperance from New Orlean’s Josh Giddey hitting two triples briefly order tied the sport at 80 all with below eight minutes to play. 

Giddey continued to impress raining triples and serving to the Thunder generate stops defensively. 

With some well timed shot making below the wire, OKC grew their first double-digit cushion with below 4 minutes to go within the conflict. 

The Bricktown boys nursed that lead for the remainder of the evening, securing their first playoff sequence since Kevin Durant wore Thunder Blue. 

As Oklahoma Metropolis pulls off simply their second sweep in franchise historical past, they await the winner of the Dallas Mavericks in opposition to L.A. Clippers first spherical sequence. 

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