OKLAHOMA CITY, OK – The Oklahoma City Blue (5-0) handed the Sioux Falls Skyforce (6-1) its first loss of the season in a lopsided 140-121 win on Thursday night at the Cox Convention Center. Former Skyforce guard Scotty Hopson dropped a team-high 27 points (9-10 FG) and seven rebounds in the win for the Blue.
Sioux Falls held a nine-point advantage heading into the final period, but lacked defensive identity down the stretch after Miami HEAT two-way player Yante Maten (20 points and four rebounds) fouled out for the second time in as many games. Maten played just 51 seconds in the fourth quarter before disqualification, while the Blue went on to outscore the Skyforce 49-21 to end the game.
DeAndre Liggins (25 points and six assists) made a career-high seven three-pointers to lead a Sioux Falls team that saw four players score 20-or-more points on the night. Raphiael Putney (25 points and six rebounds) and Rodney Purvis (21 points and seven rebounds) accompanied Liggins and Maten to round out much of the offensive production in the loss.
Oklahoma City Thunder two-way player Tyler Davis tallied the games only double-double with 21 points and 10 rebounds in just 21 minutes off the bench in the contest, while fellow Thunder two-way player Deonte Burton overcame a slow start to record 17 points in the win.
Bryce Alford (22 points), Justin Leon (16 points) and Dez Wells (13 points) accompanied Davis off the Blue bench as Oklahoma City’s second unit outscored the Skyforce bench by a 74-30 margin.
Briante Weber (16 points, six rebounds, five assists and three steals) and Sioux Falls will now look to get back on track as the team travels to Memphis to take on the Hustle (3-2) for the second time this season. Meanwhile, the Blue have a tight turnaround as they travel to Frisco, TX to take on the Legends (2-3) tomorrow night.