Basketball - Thunder wrap up series, Pacers to feel Heat

Kevin Durant shook off a cold start to score 39 points as the Oklahoma City Thunder beat the Los Angeles Clippers 104-98 to seal their second round series and clinch a place in the Western Conference finals.

Basketball - Spurs' flow versus Thunder's one-two punch in West final

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Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant celebrates during the fourth quarter in game six of the second round of the 2014 NBA play-offs against the Los Angeles Clippers (Reuters)

League MVP Durant began the game 1-for-7 from the floor, but caught fire and added 16 rebounds and five assists in a road win that gave the Thunder a 4-2 best-of-seven series triumph.

It is the third time in the last four years the Thunder have reached the West final, where they will play the top-seeded San Antonio Spurs.

It was far from easy going for Oklahoma City though, as they had to rally from an 11-point deficit in the third quarter to race past the Clippers.

In Game Five the Thunder were down by 13 in the closing minutes of the fourth but fought back to stun Los Angeles.

The Clippers' Chris Paul, who took most of the blame for the Game Five loss with several bad plays in the final few moments, had 25 points and 11 assists in their season-ending defeat. 

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David West delivered his strongest game of the play-offs with 29 points to help guide the Indiana Pacers into Eastern Conference finals with a series-clinching 93-80 Game Six win over the Washington Wizards.

The veteran power forward was in an aggressive mood from the opening tip-off, taking 26 shots and sparking a fourth-quarter surge that helped the Pacers advance from the best-of-seven series with a 4-2 victory.

The top-seeded Pacers' next challenge starts on Sunday, with a home Game One encounter against the two-time defending NBA champion Miami Heat.

The Pacers will be hoping to make it third time lucky against the Heat after losing to Miami at the same stage in the last two seasons, with West confident of success this time around.

"We've got home court (this time), which is a good start," West said. "We know who they are, they know who we are. It's going to come down to the details."

Feeding off their home crowd, the Wizards threatened to force a Game Seven when they rallied to take a 74-73 lead with about eight minutes remaining but West calmly sank two straight jump shots and the Pacers closed the game with a 20-6 run.

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"David has a way of settling our young guys and riding the waves in a game," Indiana coach Frank Vogel said. "He made a couple (big) buckets. We're lucky to have David West."

Lance Stephenson added 17 points and eight assists for the visitors.

Marcin Gortat scored a team-high 19 points for the fifth-seeded Wizards, who can hold their heads high after ending a six-year play-off absence with a first round victory over the Chicago Bulls and causing the Pacers plenty of problems.

The underdog Wizards won the opening game of the series then lost three straight. Facing elimination in Game Five in Indiana on Tuesday, Washington stunned the Pacers with a 23-point rout to extend the match-up.

On Thursday, the Wizards fell 16 points behind in the third quarter but fought back to put the Pacers on their heels.

"Nobody thought we'd be this far," said Washington second-year guard Bradley Beal, who finished with 16 points and led the team in scoring for the post-season.

"For us to believe in ourselves and make Indiana earn it, we should be proud of ourselves."

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