You never want to need a game-winning jumper to beat the Brooklyn Nets, but Paul George made it a thrilling proposition Wednesday night, capping off the Oklahoma City Thunder’s roaring comeback. Down 93-75 entering the fourth quarter, George basically did it all himself, going 9-12 for 25 points in the quarter and leading the Thunder to a 114-112 victory.
Despite the Nets entering play as the coldest team in the league, losers of seven straight, they got off to a promising start, up 16 at the half — powered by seven three-pointers from Allen Crabbe on the night. George was slow to get started — just 1-6 in the first quarter — but once he got going in the fourth, he seemed to command the entire court, draining contested threes and getting to the basket with buckling crossovers like this one. He single-handedly outscored the Nets in the fourth, 25-19. (Westbrook was quiet, too, with 0 points in the fourth, but still managed to pass Jason Kidd on the triple-double list by feeding it to George.)
Again, we’re dealing with the Nets here, so any game-winning theatrics will stand in contrast to a clumsy, haphazard defensive breakdown, but this was still pretty thrilling in its own right:
It was the first such shot for George, who had never made a go-ahead attempt with 10 seconds left in the fourth quarter or OT. This was one of those big team milestones, too, marking the most points by any Thunder player in a quarter since the franchise relocated in 2008, and the largest regular season comeback in team history. The Thunder have come a long way from their just wretched 0-4 opening salvo, and might hang around in a deceptively competitive Western Conference for the time being.