The San Antonio Spurs survived the shortstaffed Oklahoma City Thunder as they saw clutch buckets from a handful of their players on Wednesday night. Despite forfeiting a 16-point lead to the second-to-last-place team in the Western Conference, the good guys maintained their composure in crunch time and took care of business.
Dejounte Murray fell one rebound shy of a triple-double as he ended the contest with 26 points, nine boards, 12 assists, four steals, and a career-high four threes. Keldon Johnson chipped in 22 points, six rebounds, six assists, and two steals, while Lonnie Walker IV notched 20 points off the bench for the 13th time this season.
Josh Richardson started for Doug McDermott and got San Antonio on the scoreboard by driving through a crowd of defenders for what should have been an and-one finish at the basket.
Josh Primo showed his composure on a dribble handoff as he swished his first three-pointer of the night for a four-point play despite having his legs swept out from under him by Aleksej Pokusevski.
Keldon Johnson drove into the heart of the paint, drew another defender, and flipped the ball Zach Collins who corralled the pass and pulled off an excellent hook shot to finish the sequence.
Dejounte Murray was only shooting 31% from beyond the arc entering the evening, but the sixth-year point guard couldn’t miss as he nailed the first of what would become a career-high four threes.
Jakob Poeltl has cleaned the glass all season, and Wednesday night was no different as the seven-footer gobbled up offensive boards for second-chance points with put-backs like this one.
The good guys couldn’t take advantage of some beautiful ball movement that got Richardson an open three, but Josh Primo saved the day with this put-back slam that sent the AT&T Center into a frenzy.
Zach Collins bailed the Silver and Black out of a late shot clock situation as he cut to the short corner and reeled in a last-second inbounds pass from Dejounte for a catch-and-shoot three-pointer.
Although Lonnie Walker IV struggled to hit looks on the inside, the fourth-year shooting guard was practically automatic from long-distance, drilling back-to-back triples before halftime.
Keldon Johnson owns the 17th-highest three-point percentage in the NBA this season, though the average fan probably wouldn’t have guessed that with the way the Thunder closed out on the third-year forward.
KJ from deeeeeep!— San Antonio Spurs (@spurs) March 17, 2022
4️⃣ triples on the night for the Mustang! pic.twitter.com/Rvjk9Avfh0
Oklahoma City played defense on cruise control for most of the matchup, which allowed Lonnie Walker IV to drive baseline and take to the skies for a two-handed posterization of Darius Bazley.
While head coach Gregg Popovich has benched Keldon Johnson during a few crunch-time scenarios throughout the season, the Big Body made the most of his opportunity with a clutch dump-off pass to Jakob Poeltl.
Despite poor shooting over the first 47 minutes, Lonnie Walker IV rose to the occasion with the game on the line and sealed the deal with a three-pointer that put the Spurs ahead with a second to go.
And as always, here are the full game highlights.