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No Repeat For Swept Mavericks; OKC Too Young and Talented

Oklahoma City could have conceded Game 4 of its first-round series against reigning champion Dallas Saturday. The young and eager Thunder trailed by 13 points on the road with less than 10 minutes remaining. It was then that they showed this could be a special year for them.

With all-stars Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook at the front of the charge and reserve James Harden holding it all together, OKC fought back and won, 103-97, sweeping the Mavericks in four games. Harden had 15 of his 29 points in the decisive final period, giving pause to the Thunders’ next playoff opponent.

”He was phenomenal,” Durant (24 points) said. ”Tt’s fun to watch, fun to be part of. The best part about our team is that we have a lot of guys who can play off each other, and we complement each other well.”

It was no fun for Mavericks to follow up the franchise’s first championship with a first-round exit. They were oldest team in the NBA this season and just could not keep up with the Thunders’ energy.

”It was an up and down year,” Dallas all-star forward Dirk Nowitzki (34 points) said. “We weren’t consistent enough throughout to be an elite team.”

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