);
Oklahoma City Thunder

George and Westbrook take over against Blazers as Thunder win third straight

westbrook-blazers-012219-ftr-nba-getty
Russell Westbrook recorded his 14th triple-double of the season in the win over Portland (NBA Getty Images)

The Oklahoma City Thunder made it three wins in a row, as they defeated the Portland Trail Blazers 123-114 behind powerhouse performances from Paul George and Russell Westbrook.

George led the way with 36 points, eight rebounds and five steals, while Westbrook added 29 points, 14 assists and 10 rebounds for his 14th triple-double of the season. George had the hot hand early as Westbrook turned facilitator, dishing out seven first-half assists as OKC took a 62-55 lead into the half.

The Thunder caught fire from deep early, shooting 8-for-14 on their 3-point attempts in the first half, and finishing 11-for-23 for the game.

Outside of CJ McCollum, the Blazers struggled to get going from three, converting 10-for-36 attempts. McCollum, who knocked down a career-high seven triples, finished the night with 31 points.

The six-year veteran buried five of his 3-pointers in the third quarter to cut the deficit to just one point, but OKC would eventually taking a 93-87 lead into the fourth.

It was George and Westbrook who took over from that point, combining for 21 of OKC's 30 fourth-quarter points, with Westbrook putting an exclamation mark on the win with a pair of thunderous jams to ice the game.

Exhibit A:

Exhibit B:

OKC put forth a complete performance, shooting 50 percent from the field and 47 percent from three, but it was their defence that got them over the line, forcing crucial turnovers and getting out in transition as they outscored Portland 28-6 in fast-break points.

The Blazers finished with 20 turnovers for the game.

Damian Lillard did his best to keep the Blazers in the contest, scoring 14 of his team-high 34 points in the final frame, adding eight assists, five rebounds and five steals on the night, while Jusuf Nurkic continued his impressive form, finishing with 22 points and 15 rebounds.

OKC now moves to 29-18 on the season, while the Blazers sit at 29-20, one place back of the Thunder in the Northwest Division.

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