0601 GMT April 22, 2019
Oklahoma City's dynamic point guard posted his fifth triple-double in six games to help the Thunder beat the Toronto Raptors 108-104 on Sunday night, AP wrote.
Westbrook, the NBA's leading scorer, had 30 points, matched a career high with 17 assists and grabbed 11 rebounds for his seventh triple-double of the season and 15th of his career. He did much of the damage against Kyle Lowry, the starting point guard for the Eastern Conference All-Stars.
"He's playing unbelievable basketball right now," said Lowry, who finished with 14 points on 5-for-15 shooting. "The man is unbelievable, and he's pretty much carrying their team right now."
Westbrook, the All-Star MVP and reigning Western Conference player of the month, said he's aware of how special triple-doubles are.
"It crosses my mind when we win, which is the most important thing," he said.
Enes Kanter had 21 points and 12 rebounds and Serge Ibaka had 21 points and five blocks for the Thunder, which remained alone in eighth place in the Western Conference standings.
The Thunder shot 51 percent from the field and outrebounded the Raptors 49-33.
"It's not like we didn't play hard, but they took it to another level and we didn't meet it, especially in the paint with rebounding," Toronto coach Dwane Casey said.
DeMar DeRozan scored 24 points and Terrence Ross added 20 for the Raptors, which lost its third straight.
"We've got to continue to get better," Casey said. "We can't feel sorry for ourselves. Nobody is going to do that. We've got to put together 46, 47 minutes of good offense and good defense and continue as we go on with the season."
A powerful dunk by DeRozan cut Oklahoma City's lead to 106-104 with 15.4 seconds to play. Westbrook made two free throws with 14.3 seconds remaining to make it a four-point lead. DeRozan missed a contested 3-pointer, and the Thunder held on.
Toronto led by seven in the second quarter before the Thunder rallied. A dunk by Ibaka on an assist by Westbrook cut the Raptors' lead to 59-58, but Toronto maintained a 61-58 lead heading into the break. DeRozan led the Raptors with 16 points in the first half. Oklahoma City shot 56 percent before the break, but turned the ball over 10 times.
Westbrook clinched the triple-double on a rebound with just over a minute left in the third quarter. Steven Adams' jumper in the lane as time expired in the period gave the Thunder an 86-79 lead and Westbrook his 15th assist.
The Raptors felt it got caught playing Oklahoma City's game.
"We've got to understand when we play well like we did in the first half, other teams are going to make adjustments and something we tried in the first half may not work in the second half," DeRozan said. "We should have been more aggressive getting to the basket, getting to the free-throw line, and try to slow down the game that way."