Westbrook succinct on reason for OKC’s loss to Cavaliers

Russell Westbrook's analysis on the Thunder's loss to the visiting Cavaliers on Tuesday night was not exactly deep.

The Oklahoma City put the women and children to bed and went lookin’ for dinner after their 148-124 whipping of the Cleveland Cavaliers on their home hardwood on Jan. 20, Russell Westbrook and his Thunder teammates had plenty to say.

After Cleveland avenged that embarrassing loss with a 120-112 win over the Thunder on Tuesday night at Chesapeake Energy Arena, it was a complete 180, at least for Westbrook.

Thankfully, Oklahoma City coach Billy Donovan was not quite as succinct in the difference he sees between the Cleveland team his squad (32-26) pillaged 24 days ago and the one he saw invade and conquer against his own bunch on Tuesday night.

“Their skill-level, not that it was bad before, but I think the speed, the tempo and the pace they’re playing at is better,” he said when asked about the retooled Cavaliers.

After putting up modest numbers in his debut as a Cavalier in a 121-99 victory at Boston on Sunday, Larry Nance Jr. had a big night in his second game, posting 13 points, nine rebounds, one assist and three blocked shots in 25 minutes off the bench, his rebounding and rejection totals leading Cleveland (34-22).

Eight of Nance’s nine boards came on the offensive end, matching his career-high, six of which came in the decisive fourth quarter.

Thunder center Steven Adams, who again tossed around the Cavaliers like rag dolls in the paint, posting 22 points and 17 boards, tying his setting an OKC franchise-high with a dozen of his rebounds coming on the offensive end, while playing a career-most 42 minutes, took the hit for Nance’s fourth-quarter performance on the offensive glass.

“I sucked boxing out (Nance),” Adams, who did not have a fourth-quarter rebound, said. “I missed him a couple times.”