Through two quarters in Game 4, Kevin Durant sat on eight points. He had attempted just four shots.

Kendrick Perkins had twice as many attempts as the reigning three-time scoring champ.

Some saw it as a malfunction of the Thunder's offense.

Really, it was a moment in which the mounting maturity of both Durant and the Thunder was revealing itself.

With his 18-point, fourth-quarter scoring barrage — which included 16 straight for his team during a five-minute stretch — Durant on Saturday enhanced his status as one of the league's best closers. But what he did through three quarters, dishing out six of his game-high eight assists, is what represented the next step in his evolution as a clutch performer.