Originally posted on Fox Sports Arizona  |  Last updated 12/31/12
Nba_thunder_vs_0339
The Oklahoma City Thunder already have the league's best record. They could be even better if Russell Westbrook starts to consistently hit his shots. Westbrook will try to help the Thunder extend the NBA's longest current home win streak to 12 games Monday night and hand the Phoenix Suns their sixth straight loss overall and ninth in a row on the road. Oklahoma City (23-6) is enjoying its longest home win streak since a 14-game run Jan. 6-March 7. The Thunder are the NBA's highest scoring team at 105.7 points per game with Kevin Durant third in scoring at 28.4 points per game and Westbrook sixth at 21.4. Westbrook's average, however, is his worst over his last three seasons. His 40.3 shooting percentage is his worst since his rookie season. He is hoping his 28 points on 11-of-22 shooting in Saturday's 124-94 rout at Houston will help kick-start him in the right direction. "I felt comfortable," Westbrook said. "It's been the first night all year that I shot the ball well. Now I have to put two games together." Westbrook also added eight rebounds, eight assists and three steals - reasons why Thunder coach Scott Brooks isn't too worried about his star guard's scoring output. "He competes and I keep telling everybody he is one of the best players in this league because he lays it on the line every night," Brooks said. "He doesn't take possessions off and it's not always pretty but he just plays hard every night." Durant was only needed to score 26 points Saturday after averaging 36.8 over his previous four games. The Thunder cruised after building an 18-point halftime lead. Oklahoma City has won six straight over Phoenix (11-20), and these teams have not met this season. Durant is only averaging 22.5 points on 40.5 percent shooting in that run while Westbrook adds 21.8 points and 8.2 assists. Westbrook used to go up against Steve Nash when he played the Suns. Now he will face Goran Dragic, who is not at 100 percent since he is playing with a sore hip. Dragic battled through the pain for 16 points and 12 assists in Saturday's 111-107 loss at Minnesota. The Suns wasted Luis Scola's season-high 33 points. "These moral victories, or whatever you want to call them, don't do anything because at the end of the day they either put it on the left side or the right side," coach Alvin Gentry said. Phoenix is trying to avoid its longest road skid in a single season since a nine-game slide Feb. 17-March 13, 1988. "It's in our head now," said Scola, who also grabbed 10 boards. "We've just got to find a way to win games somehow." The Suns are the NBA's worst team in 3-point field-goal percentage defense at 40.4 while the Thunder are shooting 40.2 percent from long range for the league's second-best mark. Durant has made 15 of his last 33 attempts from beyond the arc and Kevin Martin 12 of his last 26. Phoenix will have to face an Oklahoma City defense that is blocking a league-best 7.6 shots per game led by Serge Ibaka, who is averaging 3.0 blocks.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: Carmelo expects to remain with Knicks

James Harden: ‘For sure’ I’m the best player in the world

Report: Pats expected to make good effort to keep Bennett

Glenn Robinson III dunks over three people to win Slam Dunk Contest

Kevin Durant booed at All-Star introductions in New Orleans

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Charles Oakley joins Ice Cube’s 3-on-3 league

Report: Kirk Cousins does not want to be with Redskins

Hall of Famer Goose Gossage says it’s ‘insulting’ to be compared to Mariano Rivera

12-year MLB veteran Nick Swisher announces retirement

Report: Chiefs, Broncos among teams that interest Tony Romo

Report: Pistons, Magic have discussed Reggie Jackson trade

Is the NBA All-Star Game worth saving?

There will never be another Dirk Nowitzki

The Rewind: Michael Jordan's last All-Star Game

Best of Yardbarker: NBA All-Star Games past, present and future

Eat, Drink, Watch: Everything goes better with a side of New Orleans

Box Score 2/17: Happy birthday, Michael Jordan (and welcome to 1000 point club, Sid!)

The 'Michael Jordan might still win the Dunk contest if he entered' quiz

How to reboot NBA All-Star Weekend

Second-year NBA stars who can salvage the season

Observations from a day at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show

Box Score 2/16: Getting ready for the ASG

Too much to Process: Can Simmons match the Embiid hype?

NBA News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Best of YB: NBA All-Star Games past, present and future

Who will break these NBA All-Star Game records?

Is the NBA All-Star Game worth saving?

There will never be another Dirk Nowitzki

The Rewind: Michael Jordan's last All-Star Game

Eat, Drink, Watch: Everything goes better with a side of New Orleans

How to reboot NBA All-Star Weekend

Baseball movies you can stream now to hold you over until Opening Day

Second-year NBA stars who can salvage the season

Observations from a day at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker