The shorthanded Kings gave the playoff hungry Thunder a scare before losing 116-103 on Friday at Chesapeake Energy Arena.
The Thunder were led by Russell Westbrook’s double-double of 27 points and 10 assists while Enes Kanter and Dion Waiters added 25 and 22 points, respectively.
Anthony Morrow was 7-for-17 from the floor including 5-for-10 from 3-point range contributing 19 points off the bench in the win.
Ben McLemore led Sacramento with 20 points, while Ray McCallum (17), Derrick Williams (17) and Omri Casspi (15) were also in double digits in the losing effort. Jason Thompson added five points and 14 rebounds for the undermanned Kings.
Friday represented the second consecutive game that Sacramento was without Rudy Gay and DeMarcus Cousins, due to a concussion and a sore right foot, respectively.
The Kings are now 4-16 without Cousins and 2-9 without Gay in the lineup this season.
The Thunder took a six-point lead into the fourth quarter and outscored the Kings 34-27 in the stanza.
After allowing 34 points in the first quarter, the Kings buckled down defensively holding Oklahoma City to 23 and 25 points in the second and third stanza, respectively.
Ultimately, the Kings just didn’t have the firepower to keep up with the Thunder, who are striving to make the playoffs despite being without Kevin Durant and Serge Ibaka due to injury.
With the win, the Thunder (43-36) have the same record as the Pelicans (43-36), who won over Phoenix on Friday. However, New Orleans owns the head-to-head tiebreaker for the eighth and final Western Conference playoff spot.
Oklahoma City takes the season series 3-1 after Friday night's win.
The Kings (27-52) have lost two straight, fall to 10-29 on the road and are now 9-18 under George Karl.
Russell Westbrook delivered 27 points, 10 rebounds and five rebounds in a win that the Thunder had to have.
Oklahoma City took control of the game late outscoring the plucky Kings 34-27 in the fourth quarter to put the game away.
Kings -- F Rudy Gay (concussion), C DeMarcus Cousins (sore right foot), G Darren Collison (core muscle injury) and F Eric Moreland (left shoulder labral tear) were out.
G Nik Stauskas (mid back strain) was questionable and played.
Thunder -- F Kevin Durant (right foot surgery) and F Serge Ibaka (right knee surgery) were out. F Perry Jones went down with a knee injury with 24.4 seconds remaining in the game.
The Kings three-game road trip concludes Sunday in Denver before wrapping up the season against the Lakers in home-and-home fashion, Monday at Sleep Train Arena and Wednesday at Staples Center.