Josh Giddey fouled out for only the second time in his NBA career but not before helping Oklahoma City equal their franchise record for most assists in a game and maintain their hot run of form.
In the 126-106 win over the Indiana Pacers on Thursday (AEDT), Australian guard Giddey posted his 17th double-double of the season - the most by a second-year player - and was especially influential in a barnstorming third quarter for the Thunder.
Giddey (16 points, 11 assists, six rebounds) had five assists for the period as the Thunder put on 42 points to tighten their hold on the Pacers, who had recovered from a slow start to win the second quarter.
In a particularly memorable play in the third quarter, Giddey beat two Pacers to a rebound and then slowed the play down, before flicking the ball back for back-court co-conspirator Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. Gilgeous-Alexander made an easy lay-up and the Thunder were up by 16 points.
Giddey's shooting has improved significantly in his second NBA season and on Thursday, he sunk eight of his 12 attempts from the field.
The 20-year-old picked up a sixth personal foul and exited the game in the final five minutes, but by that point, the result was beyond doubt.
Giddey and Kenrich Williams (12 points, 10 assists) partnered to help the Thunder record 40 assists in a game for only the second time since the franchise relocated from Seattle in 2008.
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Isaiah Joe had 23 points each to lead the scoring for the Thunder, who have now won six of their last seven games.
"The team is growing in confidence," said Thunder coach Mark Daigneault.
"It's not like an individual player just playing on a ridiculous streak or anything like that. The group is gaining confidence together, and we want to be a team that the whole is better than the sum of the parts."
Elsewhere, Australian Josh Green made his return from an elbow injury that had kept him out since December 9 and had nine points in a 130-122 loss for the Dallas Mavericks.
Green wore a brace on his right elbow in the game against Atlanta but his movement did not appear to be hampered. A corner three late in the third quarter was a highlight of the Australian's return.
Another big night from MVP candidate Luka Doncic (30 points, eight assists) was not enough to secure a Mavericks victory.
"Until we put in a better effort into defence and understanding what we have to do, then we're going to score 120 but we're going to give 130, 140. One night we might give up 150," said Mavericks coach Jason Kidd.
After the team's star player Ja Morant (24 points, eight assists) missed a lay-up in the final 20 seconds, New Zealander Steven Adams tipped the ball in to give his side a one-point lead that proved decisive.
No other NBA franchise remains undefeated this calendar year and with one more victory the Grizzlies will equal the Brooklyn Nets' record for longest winning streak this season.
Star centre Nikola Jokic picked up another triple double (31 points, 11 rebounds, 13 assists) to enhance his MVP credentials and help Denver consolidate top spot on the western conferences standings.