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Cavaliers Ready For 'A Sound Of Thunder' This Afternoon Against OKC

(Sports Network) - The Oklahoma City Thunder annihilated the Cleveland Cavaliers in the previous meeting back in December and will pay a visit to the Forest City this afternoon.

All-Star Kevin Durant scored 25 points in the first three quarters of a 106-77 drubbing of the Cavs in the OKC, while James Harden netted 19 points in that one for the Thunder, who ended a four-game losing streak to Cleveland. The Cavs have still won six of the past nine meetings and are unbeaten over the previous five matchups at Quicken Loans Arena.

The Thunder have won two in a row overall and five of the last six games, including Friday's 104-94 victory versus the Detroit Pistons. Durant continued his push for an MVP award with 24 points, nine rebounds, five assists and three steals for Oklahoma City, which is fourth in the Western Conference standings and got 22 points from Harden.

"We get everybody involved," said Durant, who was coming off a 34-point, 16- rebound effort in Philadelphia. "Everybody gets a touch and just like any sport, once you get a few baskets you start to feel good about yourself. Everybody was energetic on the offensive end tonight...Defense could have been a lot better."

Serge Ibaka added 16 points and eight boards in the win. The Thunder will begin a three-game road trip Sunday against the Cavs, Wizards and Heat, and are 18-14 as the guest this season. Oklahoma City is 18-6 against the East.

Russell Westbrook notched his 30th double-double of the season against the Pistons with 13 points and a game-high 11 assists. Harden is averaging 17.7 ppg since the All-Star break.

The Thunder are still waiting for newcomer Kendrick Perkins to hit the floor since acquiring him from Boston before the trade deadline. Perkins is out with a sprained knee and is expected to miss Sunday's game against the Cavs.

Cleveland has lost three straight and five of six games, and is coming off Wednesday's 110-90 loss in Milwaukee. Samardo Samuels had 15 points and Daniel Gibson ended with 13 for the Cavaliers, who received 11 points from both Anthony Parker and Christian Eyenga.

"We stopped playing," Cavs coach Byron Scott said. "We stopped playing defensively and on the offensive end as a team. We tried to play individual basketball."

Scott hopes his team can stop a four-game home losing streak and improve on an 8-24 home ledger this afternoon. It won't be easy with guard Baron Davis expected to miss some time for personal reasons.

Ramon Sessions recorded 10 points against the Bucks and is averaging 17.3 points in his last 16 games. J.J. Hickson is posting 16.5 ppg in his past 13 contests and had just four in the recent loss.

Photographs by spatulated, Triple Tri, and chrischappelear used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.