Trans. Apr 14 7:45 ET (Apr 14 7:45 ET ) NEW ORLEANS - Tyreke Evans, pressed into emergency point guard duty, scored a career-high 41 points and dished out eight assists to power the short-handed New Orleans Pelicans to a 101-89 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder Monday night at the Smoothie King Center. Evans' status before the game was uncertain because of a bone bruise in his knee, but he exploded for 32 of his 41 points in the second half as the Pelicans (33-48) broke Oklahoma City's 10-game winning streak over New Orleans. Instead, they will clinch the second seed if the Los Angeles Clippers lose to Denver on Tuesday night or if the Thunder defeat Detroit in the regular-season finale on Wednesday. Oklahoma City got 25 points from forward Kevin Durant and 22 from forward Serge Ibaka.
Serge Ibaka was great but his teammates were not in the Thunder's loss to a dilapidated Pelicans squad on Monday, as the big man hit 7-of-13 shots (8-of-10 FTs) for 22 points with 16 rebounds, five assists, one steal and one block.
The Scoop:The loss forces the Thunder to win on Wednesday if the Clippers can win on Tuesday against the Nuggets, and even then a Clippers loss on Wednesday would net OKC the No. 2 seed. While the loss tonight is going to leave a sour taste in fans' mouths, fantasy owners should be thrilled that Ibaka, Kevin Durant (25 points, 9-of-23 FGs, seven rebounds, six assists, seven turnovers) and Co. will have something to play for against the Pistons.
Serge Ibaka blocked three shots during Sunday's 102-97 loss to the Pacers, adding 11 points, six boards, one assist, one 3-pointer and three steals.
The Scoop:He's not going to catch Anthony Davis for the blocks-per-game title, but Serge's durability will make him the top player for total blocks for the fourth straight year -- assuming DeAndre Jordan doesn't have 10 more blocks than Serge in their last two games. He's as safe as they come as a fantasy player and he should go off the board in the first round next year.
Serge Ibaka toyed with the Pelicans on Friday and nearly triple-doubled, scoring 16 points on 6-of-8 shooting with 10 rebounds and a season-high eight blocks.
The Scoop:Ibaka is a shade below Anthony Davis (2.8) for the blocks crown this season at 2.7 blocks per game, and he is returning solid top 10-14 value on the season in 9- and 8-cat leagues respectively.
Kevin Durant scored 27 points, Russell Westbrook added 24 and the Oklahoma City Thunder beat the short-handed New Orleans Pelicans 116-94 on Friday night to clinch at least the No. 2 seed in the Western Conference playoffs. Serge Ibaka added 16 points, 10 rebounds and a season-high eight blocks for the Thunder, who won their third straight. Oklahoma City led by 25 points at the end of the third quarter, so Durant and Westbrook rested in the fourth. Darius Miller scored a career-high 18 points and Austin Rivers had 18 points and eight rebounds for the Pelicans.