Originally posted on Fox Sports Southwest  |  Last updated 12/17/12
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- Serge Ibaka tied his career-best with 25 points and grabbed a season-high 17 rebounds, and the Oklahoma City Thunder beat the San Antonio Spurs 107-93 Monday night for their 11th straight win. The Thunder took control with a string of 11 straight points during the third quarter, punctuated by Nick Collison's putback that made it 71-56 with 4:27 remaining in the period. On the next possession, Ibaka ripped away his third straight offensive rebound before heading toward midcourt and flexing his muscles. Spurs coach Gregg Popovich kept his starters parked on the bench throughout the fourth quarter, even as San Antonio cut an 18-point lead in half with about 5 minutes left. Tony Parker and Nando De Colo had 14 points apiece to lead the Spurs, who could have created a virtual tie for the best record with a win. Manu Ginobili did not play for the Spurs because he bruised his left quadriceps in Saturday's win at Boston. Russell Westbrook chipped in 22 points and nine assists, Kevin Martin scored 20 and Kevin Durant had 19 as Oklahoma City maintained sole possession of the best record in the NBA. It was the teams' first meeting in Oklahoma City since the Thunder overcame a 2-0 deficit in the Western Conference finals by winning the next four games. The Spurs drew a measure of revenge in the season opener by beating Oklahoma City on Parker's jumper as time expired. There were no such dramatics in this one, with Parker and Duncan remaining out of the game even after James Anderson stole an ill-advised Ibaka pass and ran out for a two-handed dunk to get the deficit down to 93-84 with 5:29 remaining. The Spurs came up empty on two possessions with chances to make it closer before Martin sank a 3-pointer to put Oklahoma City on its way to closing it out. Ibaka and Durant each had two-handed slams in the final minutes to ice it. Stephen Jackson, who had missed San Antonio's previous 14 games with a broken right pinkie finger, returned just in time to face the Thunder. He had been fined by the NBA recently for making a threatening Twitter post about Ibaka, but subsequently apologized. The two had a chance for a confrontation in the first half when Jackson stood in the way as Ibaka went up to catch an alley-oop from Durant. Jackson stood his ground to prevent Ibaka from dunking, and Ibaka fell to the floor. But Jackson simply raised his hand to claim credit for the foul and peace prevailed. The Spurs never found an answer for Ibaka, who had just four points while fighting foul trouble in the season opener. He hit his first seven shots and finished 10 for 16. Duncan and Parker made San Antonio's first four baskets of the second half, but eventually couldn't keep up with the Thunder. The Spurs tried going to their cornerstones to break up Oklahoma City's 11-0 run but Duncan had the ball stolen by Westbrook and then a shot blocked by Ibaka on consecutive possessions. Parker followed by missing a corner 3-pointer off the side of the backboard and then getting a fast-break layup swatted by Durant. Collison's putback on a missed 3-pointer by Thabo Sefolosha got fans the sellout crowd out of their seats. Collison later collected a loose ball and pushed it ahead to Sefolosha for a right-handed slam that put Oklahoma City up 82-64 after three quarters. That ended up being the end of the night for Parker and Duncan, who had 12 points and five rebounds. Ibaka and Martin combined to go 10 for 10 and score 23 points as Oklahoma City opened a 33-26 lead after Martin's three-point play to start the second quarter. San Antonio rallied behind its reserves and went up 41-39 on Tiago Splitter's basket underneath before the Thunder pushed ahead for good with a 12-2 response. NOTES: After playing 16 of their first 24 games at home, Oklahoma City plays 15 of its next 21 games on the road. The roughest stretch is another three weeks away, when the Thunder play 11 of 13 games away. ... Referee Bennett Salvatore called a technical foul from across the court against Popovich as he complained to official Scott Twardowski after calling a timeout during Oklahoma City's 11-0 third-quarter run. ... Oklahoma City's last 11-game win streak was in 1996 as the Seattle SuperSonics.
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