New Orleans, LA (SportsNetwork.com) - The Thunder welcomed back Kevin Durant on Tuesday, but Anthony Davis and the New Orleans Pelicans gave the reigning MVP a dose of the uphill climb Oklahoma City faces the rest of the season.
Davis totaled 25 points, 10 rebounds, six steals and four blocks, and the Pelicans never trailed in the second half en route to a 112-104 victory over the finally healthy Thunder.
Durant was aggressive in his first game of the season following right foot surgery in October and showed flashes of being in midseason form. He finished with 27 points on 9-of-18 shooting and played nearly 30 minutes.
The Thunder went 5-12 with Durant sidelined, and while hopes are high with their projected starting lineup back on the court, they still sit near the bottom of the competitive Western Conference.
"We have to be more focused," Durant said. "It starts with the leaders. It starts with me. ... We all have to do a better job."
Davis received plenty of help from his teammates as New Orleans convincingly snapped a three-game slide. Tyreke Evans led all scorers with 30 points, while Jrue Holiday and Ryan Anderson both recorded double-doubles.
Russell Westbrook, who returned to the lineup last Friday after missing 14 games and led Oklahoma City to a second straight win, scored 21 points on 6- of-20 shooting.
Durant missed a 17-footer on the game's opening possession but got to the foul line a little over a minute in and drained a 3-pointer the next time down.
New Orleans quickly erased the early deficit and began pulling away by pouring in 40 points in the second quarter.
Davis scored seven points on a half-ending 12-0 spurt, including a bucket over Durant as he was trying to draw a charge. Davis made the free throw, then hit a baseline jumper in the closing seconds to give New Orleans a 69-52 cushion at the break.
Oklahoma City began the fourth quarter on an 8-2 run to pull within five, 87-82, but the Pelicans netted 13 of the next 16 points -- the final eight coming from Evans -- to put the game away.
"We played extremely hard tonight," Pelicans head coach Monty Williams said. "That's something we haven't seen consistently."
The Thunder fell to 1-8 on the road ... The Pelicans were just 2-14 in the previous 16 meetings ... Holiday recorded 16 points and 10 assists, while Anderson had 23 points and 11 rebounds ... Reggie Jackson scored 17 points for Oklahoma City.