An ankle injury to Tony Parker soured the San Antonio Spurs’ conference-clinching 112-107 overtime win over the Oklahoma City Thunder.
The French point guard missed the second half on Saturday as Spurs sealed the Western Conference finals 4-2 with the victory at Oklahoma’s Chesapeake Energy Arena.
Boris Diaw led the way for Spurs with 26 points, while Tim Duncan (19 points and 15 rebounds) and Kawhi Leonard (17 and 11) finished with double-doubles.
The conference title was San Antonio’s sixth and second straight, while their last NBA championship came in 2007.
Spurs face two-time defending championns the Miami Heat in the NBA Finals having been beaten 4-3 by the same opponents in the deciding series last season.
San Antonio hold home-court advantage in the finals after finishing the season with a higher winning percentage than the Heat.
Game one of the finals is at San Antonio’s AT&T Center on Thursday.
Saturday was the first thriller in what has been a series littered with one-sided affairs, none of which had been decided by fewer than nine points.
Manu Ginobili (15 points) and Danny Green (11) were the other Spurs players to manage double figures.
Russell Westbrook (34 points, eight assists and seven rebounds) was outstanding for the Thunder, while NBA MVP Kevin Durant had a double-double of 31 points and 14 rebounds.
Reggie Jackson (21 points) and Serge Ibaka (16) were also solid.
Without Parker, Spurs outscored the Thunder 37-20 in the third quarter.
But the Thunder, trailing by six points with two-and-a-half minutes remaining, fought back and forced overtime after Ginobili missed a jump shot on the buzzer.
Spurs scored the last six points in overtime as Westbrook and Durant missed their chances to force a game seven for the Thunder.
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