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Friday, Jan. 20, 2012

Blatche helps Wizards snap Thunder's streak


WASHINGTON — Wizards coach Flip Saunders decided to put Andray Blatche back in the starting lineup, and the home crowd responded by booing the struggling forward. When Washington got off to a slow start, they booed more heartily.

News photo
Surprise result: Washington's John Wall goes up for a layup in front of Oklahoma City's Serge Ibaka in the second half on Wednesday. The Wizards beat the Thunder 105-102. AP

However, they were cheering by the end of the night as the Wizards got just their second win of the season, beating Oklahoma City 105-102 Wednesday night and ending the Thunder's seven-game winning streak.

John Wall scored 25 points, Nick Young had 24 and Jordan Crawford added 18 for Washington, which had lost 12 of its first 13 games.

Blatche missed three games with a sprained right shoulder and came off the bench in the team's last game. He had 12 points, 10 rebounds, four assists and a lot of fun listening to the crowd.

"That was terrible," he said with a smile. "Oh man. We won, so if they want to do that and we win, I don't care."

Russell Westbrook scored 36 points and Kevin Durant had 33 for Oklahoma City, which lost for only the third time in 15 games. During one stretch bridging the second and third quarters, the duo accounted for 21 of the Thunder's 23 points. Both slowed down after resting at the start of the fourth, missing 11 of 17 from the field.

Durant savors playing in his native Washington. He entered the game averaging 31.1 points against the Wizards — his best against any team.

"It's not the end of the world. We lost to a hungrier team than us," Durant said. "It hurts, because we want to win every game, especially me, I want to win at home, but you've got to look past it."

Westbrook's total was a season high, but the Thunder got only eight points from their other three starters.

"It's tough, especially when we weren't mentally focused to start the game. They stuck around and stuck around and they kind of got a win," Westbrook said.

Wall also had eight assists, seven rebounds and made 13 of 14 from the line. He was sanguine about his team and their league-worst record.

"We know we're better than our record," Wall said. "You're still 2-12. You still got a lot to do."

Nuggets 108, 76ers 104 (OT)

In Philadelphia, Andre Miller scored a season-high 28 points and Nene had 20 points and 14 rebounds.

Spurs 85, Magic 83 (OT)

In Orlando, Tony Parker scored 25 points, including 16 in the fourth quarter and overtime.

Nets 107, Warriors 100

In Newark, New Jersey, Deron Williams scored 24 points, 11 coming in crucial stretch of the fourth quarter, and had 10 assists and eight rebounds.

Suns 91, Knicks 88

In New York, Steve Nash had 26 points and 11 assists, Shannon Brown hit a crucial 3-pointer and Phoenix snapped a five-game losing streak.

Timberwolves 93, Pistons 85

In Minneapolis, Kevin Love had 20 points and 17 rebounds and the Timberwolves overcame a dreadful start to slug out a win.

Celtics 96, Raptors 73

In Boston, Rajon Rondo scored 13 of his 21 points in the first quarter and left with a sore right wrist in the third, and the Celtics cruised past Toronto to end a five-game losing streak.

Grizzlies 93, Hornets 87

In New Orleans, Marc Gasol had 22 points and 12 rebounds to help Memphis win its fourth straight.

Hawks 92, Trail Blazers 89

In Atlanta, Joe Johnson scored 24 points and came up with a key defensive play down the stretch, leading the Hawks to their fourth straight victory since losing All-Star center Al Horford.

Kings 92, Pacers 88

In Sacramento, Marcus Thornton scored 17 points and the Kings rallied from 14 points down in the fourth to snap a three-game losing streak.

Clippers 91, Mavericks 89

In Los Angeles, Chauncey Billups hit a winning 3-pointer with 1 second left, Mo Williams made his first seven shots and finished with 26 points off the bench in his return to the lineup and the Clippers stunned Dallas.

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