After picking up three first-quarter fouls, Kevin Durant concluded his night with 22 points, five assists and four rebounds in nearly 32 minutes. His efficiency, however, is what's most noteworthy, as he shot 50 percent from the field, 9-of-9 from the foul line and didn't commit a single turnover.
Jeremy Lamb was the other name worth noting, as he scored 22 points on 9-of-16 shooting.
Unfortunately for OKC, it was Derrick Rose who stole the show. His fourth-quarter performance was unmatched by anyone else on the floor, and his 26 points in 35 minutes proved to any doubters that he is officially back.
With the preseason now behind the Thunder, it's time to get focused once again. The team went 3-0 to start exhibition play, yet it closed just 1-3.
But while a 4-3 record is nothing to brag about, there's a lot of positives that this team takes into the regular season. Against Chicago, Durant was unstoppable when he was aggressive, Reggie Jackson looked confident offensively and Lamb proved he can be a second option while Russell Westbrook is sidelined.
Don't forget, either, that Serge Ibaka sat against the Bulls, and his presence in the middle will be welcomed at the start of the new year.
The Thunder open 2013-14 on Wednesday, Oct. 30 against the Utah Jazz, and despite this loss to Chicago, OKC fans have reason for optimism. The new year is just around the corner, and if all goes according to plan, the Thunder will be contenders from Day 1.
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