Thunder down Rockets again, push win streak to 6


Shai Gilgeous-Alexander scored 31 points to lead the host Oklahoma City Thunder to a 112-95 win over the Houston Rockets on Tuesday.

Oklahoma City picked up its sixth victory in a row, matching a season-best winning streak. The Thunder improved to 41-17 after going just 40-42 in 2022-23.

Houston, meanwhile, is 1-11 in its past 12 road games.

The Thunder closed the third quarter strong, getting nine points from Gilgeous-Alexander during an 11-4 run that sent Oklahoma City into the fourth up 84-74. During that outburst, Gilgeous-Alexander hit a deep step-back 3-pointer, then came down the floor on the following possession and sank a pullup jumper over the outstretched arm of Jeff Green.

The Thunder kept pouring it on in the fourth quarter, leading by as many as 20 before closing out the victory.

Jalen Williams supplied 24 points and Chet Holmgren had 18 to go along with 13 rebounds for Oklahoma City, which also beat the Rockets on Sunday. The Thunder shot 47.3 percent from the field during Tuesday’s win.

Alperen Sengun paced Houston with 23 points, 11 boards and six assists. Jabari Smith Jr. totaled 18 points and 13 rebounds, and Jalen Green went for 16 points.

Fred VanVleet was held to five points on 2-of-11 shooting as the Rockets lost for the fourth time in five games.

Dillon Brooks’ dunk drew Houston even at 48-48 with 3:20 left in the second quarter, but Oklahoma City scored the next 12 points before settling for a 60-50 lead at the break.

The 12-0 burst was headlined by a pair of reviews that both went the Thunder’s way.

On the first, a foul initially called on Williams was changed to a charge on Sengun. Shortly thereafter, VanVleet believed that he had tied up Holmgren as Holmgren drove to the basket, but VanVleet was called for a shooting foul.

After a review upheld the call, Smith and Rockets coach Ime Udoka were hit with technicals.

Jalen Green knocked down a 3-pointer with 4:19 remaining in the third quarter to cut Houston’s deficit to 73-70, but the Thunder then started to run away with the contest.