By Randy Renner
No Kevin Durant? No problem, at least not on Monday night as Russell Westbrook dominated the game with his 10th career triple-double in leading the Thunder to a closer than it should have been 104-97 win over the Orlando Magic.
Westbrook had a double-double by halftime and the triple by the end of the third quarter. He finished with a game-high 25 points, 11 rebounds and 14 assists. He also recorded four steals and blocked a shot.
"I just wanted to find a way to keep us going," he said after the game. "I wanted to make sure everyone was in position to score. We just came out and played our game tonight."
Durant again had problems with that sprained big toe on his left foot. He appeared to be limping some diring Saturday's loss in Memphis and the toe swelled again over the weekend. He was seen at the end of Monday morning's shootaround session icing his left foot. And the decision was made to keep him out of the game.
KD's regular backup, Perry Jones, couldn't play either after sprianing his ankle so coach Scott Brooks decided to give Dion Waiters the start and Waiters responded with a huge game, scoring 24 points on 9-for-15 shooting.
Serge Ibaka had a nice night too, with 16 points and eight rebounds. anthony Morrow broke out of a shooting slump going 4-for-6 overall and 3-for-3 on threes to score 15 points.
The Thunder held Orlando to 42.2 percent shooting while hitting 49.3 percent of their own shots.
The only problem areas were offenisve rebounds, Orlando had 14 of those resulting in a whopping 23 second chance points. Against a better opponent that could have been problematic.
The Magic also controlled the paint, scoring 52 points to just 36 for the Thunder.
The Thunder led by as many as 22 but gave up 30 points in the fourth quarter as the Magic tried to get close enough for a miracle finish.
The win stops the bleeding, or at least slows it. The Thunder had lost four of five coming into the game tonight, all those losses coming on the road.
The Thunder have now won seven straight at home.
OKC will practice Tuesday before flying to New Orleans to play the Pelicans who managed to knock off the Atlanta Hawks on Monday night. the Pelicans come to Oklahoma City on Friday for a quick rematch.
The Thunder are now back to .500 (24-24) and need to start stringing together some wins.
"We wanna be in a better position that we're in," admitted Brooks. "We're fighting through a lot of different things this season that we haven't had to before. But it's always better when you play hard and tonight we played hard."