Thunder deck Spurs, tie their series at 2-2

The Thunder's Russell Westbrook holds off San Antonio's Boris Diaw (left) and Tim Duncan to get off a shot during Oklahoma City's 109-103 victory at home.
The Thunder's Russell Westbrook holds off San Antonio's Boris Diaw (left) and Tim Duncan to get off a shot during Oklahoma City's 109-103 victory at home. (ERIC GAY / Associated Press)
Posted: June 03, 2012

Playing at home in a key Game 4, the Oklahoma City Thunder - paced by Kevin Durant's game-high 36 points - beat San Antonio, 109-103, Saturday night to tie their Western Conference finals series at two games each.

Tim Duncan paced the Spurs with 21 points.

Wade pledges to step up

Everywhere Dwyane Wade turned Friday, two Boston Celtics seemed to be waiting. And as long as Chris Bosh is out, he understands it's probably going to stay that way.

The Boston Celtics can double-team him without fear, knowing LeBron James is the only other Miami player who can consistently hurt them.

Wade scored only 18 points Friday in the Heat's 101-91 loss in Game 3 in Boston's TD Garden, snapping his streak of 12 straight 20-point playoff games against Boston that was the longest since the Lakers' Jerry West had 18 in a row from 1966 to 1969.

Bosh is not expected to be back from his lower abdominal strain for Sunday's Game 4, so the Celtics' scheme probably won't change. Instead, his performance will change, Wade said.

"I'm not coming here crying," he said Saturday. "I can score the basketball, I've just got to find other ways to do that. It might not be a 41-point effort like it was in Indiana, you never know what each game takes, but I'm just going to go out here and play the game that I played for so many years and I will find a way to be effective."

Wade shot 9 of 20 in his second-lowest scoring performance of this postseason, after a five-point effort in Game 3 of the second round against Indiana. He was struggling with knee pain then, but insisted there was nothing wrong physically now.

The only problem, he said, was the two defenders closing on him whenever he came off a pick or caught the ball anywhere near the lane. He was also largely contained in Game 2, managing only 15 points in regulation before scoring eight in overtime to help the Heat pull out a 115-111 victory.

"You look at all the effort areas we dominated the first two games, we got our butt kicked in all of them," said coach Erik Spoelstra, rolling through the list quickly as if afraid he'd forget one if he stopped for a breath.

"Points in the paint, they pounded us. Rebounding, they pounded us. Free throws, they beat us. Layup attempts, they beat us. Every area that has to do with toughness and effort we lost, and in the first two games we were winning those categories. Loose balls, 50-50 opportunities."

That's because the Celtics realize that's the only way they can beat such a talented opponent.

"I just thought Game 3 was more of a desperation game and we have to play like that," said Boston's Kevin Garnett. "We have to get these two at home by any means necessary and then deal with whatever after that. I felt like the way we played in Game 3 is the way we have to play. This team is too athletic, too good, too confident, too well coached."

Olshey stays with Clippers

The Los Angeles Clippers and Neal Olshey have reached an agreement in principle to bring him back as the team's general manager.

The Clippers finished with a 40-26 record and reached the second round of the playoffs.

- Associated Press

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