PORTLAND -- Things were tight for a half Friday night at the Rose Garden.
Then the Oklahoma City Thunder, with Russell Westbrook leading the way, put the Portland Trail Blazers in their rear-view mirror. Westbrook scored 33 points -- 17 of them in a decisive third quarter -- as Oklahoma City blew out Portland 106-90 Friday night at the Rose Garden.
Leading 55-54 at the half, Oklahoma City took control in the third quarter, outscoring Portland 26-7 for an 81-61 lead heading into the final period. The Blazers made 3-of-21 field-goal attempts in the quarter.
"I don't know if we can take all the credit," OKC coach Scottie Brooks said of the third-quarter swing. "They missed shots they've been making all year, but our defense was outstanding. Any time you can hold a team under 10 points, you're doing something right."
Reggie Jackson came off the bench for 17 points and Kevin Durant added 16 points, six assists and five rebounds for the Thunder (59-21), who moved 1 1/2 games ahead of San Antonio (57-22) in the battle for the best record in the Western Conference.
"They're an elite team in the NBA," said rookie Will Barton, who scored 18 points to lead the Trail Blazers (33-46). "There is a reason why they went to the Finals last year and are fighting for the No. 1 seed (in the West) again. They're getting ready for the playoffs, so that's what you'd expect from them."
It was the 10th straight defeat for Portland and its seventh straight at home, the latter a franchise record.
"It's tough," said Portland rookie Damian Lillard, who was held to 10 points on 3-for-14 shooting. "I hate losing, especially with the type of season we had.
"I don't want to go into the offseason on a (13)-game losing streak. I want to win at least one (more) game. It's frustrating to be losing."
The Thunder shot .519 from the field, including .409 from 3-point range.
Oklahoma City shot .650 from the field but still led only 30-26 after the first quarter. Serge Ibaka, making 5-of-5 shots, had 10 points in the quarter for the Thunder.
OKC's lead was 30-28 when the Thunder went on a 14-5 run to hike the lead to 44-33. The Blazers responded with a 13-0 spurt to go back on top 46-44. Thabo Sefalosha's 3-point shot at the buzzer gave the Thunder a 55-54 lead at intermission.
Westbrook had 14, Durant 12 and Ibaka 11 at halftime while Barton scored 12 and LaMarcus Aldridge 10 before the break. Both teams shots well in the half - OKC at .550 and Portland at .511.
NOTES: The Thunder clinched the Northwest Division championship for the third straight year. ... OKC swept the season series and has won seven consecutive games against Portland. ... Both teams were shorthanded. Oklahoma City was without starting center Kendrick Perkins (hamstring) and sixth man Kevin Martin (back). Portland was minus two starters -- shooting guard Wesley Matthews (ankle) and small forward Nicolas Batum (shoulder). ... The Thunder can guarantee themselves home-court advantage throughout the Western Conference playoffs by winning out against non-playoff opponent Sacramento and Milwaukee (37-41), the latter ticketed for eighth place in the East. "We would love to have it," coach Scottie Brooks said. "Any time you can have an extra home game in a series its important, but it doesn't guarantee you'll move on. We just want to play well down the stretch. ... Portland's 10-game losing streak is its longest since late in the 2005-06 season. ... Before the game, Brooks on Portland rookie point guard Damian Lillard, who went for a season-high 38 points in Wednesday's loss to the Los Angeles Lakers: "He has the composure of a guy who has been in the league for seven or eight years. Nothing seems to rattle him. He had a great first month and it seems like each month he's played a little bit better. He's obviously going to win the Rookie of the Year." ... During their current five-game road win streak, Thunder have beaten the opposition by an average of 15.6 points.