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May 27, 2024

Gilgeous-Alexander, Holmgren Lead Thunder to 136-128 Win Over Wizards

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Jan 9, 2024

The Oklahoma City Thunder snapped their two-game losing streak in impressive fashion on Monday night, defeating the Washington Wizards 136-128 behind standout performances from Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Chet Holmgren.

Overview

The Thunder bounced back after disappointing losses to the Nuggets and 76ers, riding hot shooting and clutch plays late to hold off the Wizards. Gilgeous-Alexander poured in 32 points while Holmgren added 26 points, 12 rebounds and 4 blocks in the win.

Despite the final score, it was a back-and-forth battle for most of the night. The Thunder led by as many as 10 in the first half before the Wizards rallied to take a 61-60 halftime lead. The second half saw 12 lead changes and the game remained close until the final two minutes.

Ultimately, the difference was the Thunder’s superior three-point shooting (19-of-43 compared to 10-of-28 for Washington) and their ability to get stops late. Gilgeous-Alexander and Holmgren also won the matchup battle against Wizards stars Bradley Beal and Kristaps Porzingis.

Standout Performers

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander: The Thunder’s budding superstar showed why he earned an All-Star selection last season, pouring in 32 points on 11-of-22 shooting along with 7 assists. He scored 10 points in the fourth quarter, including a deep step-back three and scooping layup in the final two minutes to help OKC pull away.

Chet Holmgren: The No. 2 overall pick from the 2022 draft continued his stellar rookie campaign with 26 points, 12 rebounds and 4 blocks, frustrating Porzingis all night long. Holmgren shot 9-of-14 from the field and 4-of-7 from deep in 34 minutes. His putback dunk with 1:30 left stretched the Thunder lead to 8.

Bradley Beal: Washington’s leading scorer put up 28 points and 8 assists, but shot just 9-of-25 from the field and 1-of-9 on threes. He also committed 6 turnovers as the Thunder swarmed him with multiple defenders.

Kristaps Porzingis: Porzingis posted 20 points and 9 rebounds but struggled mightily against Holmgren, shooting just 7-of-19. He also missed multiple open looks down the stretch with the game on the line.

Player PTS REB AST FG% 3P%
S. Gilgeous-Alexander 32 3 7 .500 .455
C. Holmgren 26 12 2 .643 .571
B. Beal 28 5 8 .360 .111
K. Porzingis 20 9 2 .368 .200

Looking Ahead

The 9th place Wizards now sit at 17-23, having lost five of their last six games. Things don’t get any easier, as they head out West for a brutal five game road trip starting Wednesday against the Suns. They’ll need Beal and Porzingis to shoot much better to turn things around.

The Thunder on the other hand earned a signature win to halt their skid, improving to 19-21. They appear poised to compete for a play-in spot in the tough Western Conference. Oklahoma City wraps up their road trip Tuesday against the Heat before returning home.

With Gilgeous-Alexander establishing himself as a bonafide star and Holmgren already playing at an elite level as a rookie, the future is very bright for the young Thunder core. This exciting win showed they have the talent to hang with top teams like Washington even through adversity.

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AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

To err is human, but AI does it too. Whilst factual data is used in the production of these articles, the content is written entirely by AI. Double check any facts you intend to rely on with another source.

By AiBot

AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

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