Thunder 110 , Hornets 95

Peter Finney Jr., The Sports Xchange
The SportsXchange

NEW ORLEANS - Kevin Durant and Kevin Martin scored 27 points each and combined for 10 3-pointers to power the Oklahoma City Thunder to a 110-95 rout of the New Orleans Hornets Friday.
The 110 points were a season high for the Thunder (7-3). Their offensive production was so good they made 14 of 29 shots from 3-point range (48.3 percent), which was better than the Hornets' overall 42.3 percent shooting.
Durant was 4-of-5 from long range, and Martin was 6-of-11. Martin's six 3-pointers tied his season high.
The Thunder, who also got 15 points from Serge Ibaka, led by 29 points at halftime and scored the first five points of the second half to take a 71-37 lead.
Hornets rookie forward Anthony Davis suffered through a lackluster performance, making just 4 of 14 shots and finishing with eight points. Ryan Anderson led the Hornets, who lost their second consecutive game, with 15 points off the bench.
The lopsided victory allowed Durant, who had averaged 42 minutes in his last two games, to get some well-deserved rest. He sat out the fourth quarter.
The Hornets (3-4) were playing the first of two games on consecutive nights, but coach Monty Williams decided to keep Davis in the game until midway through the fourth quarter.
The Thunder did it from inside and the perimeter in the first half, exploding past the Hornets to take a 66-37 lead at intermission. The 66 points were the most the Hornets had allowed in a half this season.
Martin came off the bench with 22 first-half points in just 14 minutes, including 5-of-7 from 3-point range, and Durant added 18 points and eight rebounds. The Thunder shots 63.9 percent (23-of-36) from the field in the first half.
The game got chippy at the end of the half when the Hornets, with a foul to give, had Greivis Vasquez shove Russell Westbrook hard out front. When Westbrook missed a 3-pointer at the buzzer, he and Vasquez exchanged words and were given double technicals, prompting normally mild-mannered Hornets coach Williams to start jawing at halfcourt with Durant.
Davis had a miserable start, going 1-of-8 in the first 20 minutes.
Notes: Hornets executive vice president Mickey Loomis, who also serves as GM of the New Orleans Saints, announced before the game that team owner Tom Benson had given a multi-year contract extension to Hornets GM Dell Demps. That follows on the heels of an extension given to Williams, the head coach. "It's an unbelievable feeling," Demps said. "We have a plan. We want to achieve sustained success. We got a young core right now, and we want to see those guys grow and play together. We want to compete at the highest level."... A key piece of the puzzle is shooting guard Eric Gordon, who signed a four-year, $58 million contract during the offseason but has played only nine games in the last two seasons because of a lingering knee injury. In the midst of fan unrest, Gordon has been rehabbing the knee in Los Angeles. Are the Hornets - and Demps - facing the NBA's version of the "financial cliff" because of Gordon's uncertain future? "We're getting reports," Demps said. "He's working out. He's doing everything under his power to get back. I know he's eager to get back and play. We're just supporting him and hoping that his rehab goes well."... Thunder coach Scott Brooks said before Friday's game he hopes to adjust OKC's rotation to give Durant an earlier and more extended rest. During the Thunder's 6-3 start, Durant averaged 39.4 minutes per game.

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