Dennis Schroder scored 30 points to help the Oklahoma City Thunder beat the Cleveland Cavaliers 109-103 on Wednesday night. Schroder had six points in a critical 43-second span late in the game that helped the Thunder grab control. Paul, an All-Star who usually is a primary scoring option late in close games, willingly deferred. It was Schroder’s eighth straight game with at least 20 points. He was a reserve in seven of those games, including this one.
Collin Sexton scored 23 points and Kevin Love had 20 for the Cavaliers, who have lost 12 of 13.
“Executing,” Love said. “That’s our next evolution, is to keep trending that way. And then I believe on the defensive end, just really getting our coverages down. We had some slip-ups tonight where we’re kind of looking at each other talking about the game plan, and we just need to make sure that we lock in on that 100 percent.”
The Thunder led 61-53 at halftime behind 15 points from Schroder and 12 from Gilgeous-Alexander and Gallinari. Oklahoma City shot 52.4% before the break.
Cleveland led briefly in the third quarter after an early rally, but the Thunder took an 84-81 lead into the fourth.