Kevin Durant with a welcome note to his new teammate: “The circumstances that [Eric Maynor] came in with, catching three planes and getting traded as a rookie after 20 games, it was tough. He came in and controlled the game for us and got the ball to people in good spots and if we would have made more shots for him he maybe would have had nine or 10 assists. He played well and I know once his feet get under him and he becomes more comfortable with our offense, he’s going to excel. We’re glad to have another guy that we can depend on to backup Russell. He’s a scorer but he knows in this league that he has to defend and distribute the basketball. But he can score when we need him to, and he’s versatile in his game. He gives us a different dimension to our offense. Him and Russell are going to be phenomenal for us.”
In case you didn’t hear over the weekend, D.J. White has been assigned to Tulsa. He had 22-9 and 19-9 in two games over the weekend.
Nets Are Scorching wants the Nets to follow the Thunder’s path: “Outside of Durant, and possibly Westbrook, these are not yet household names, yet the Thunder are keeping their young heads above water in the tough Western Conference. While there’s still a lot can that go wrong for the Nets, the Thunder should hopefully provide hope for what can go right. While adding someone on the level of LeBron James or Chris Bosh is nice, it’s not a necessity. The Nets just need to stick with their plan of rebuilding, even if it means an ugly record in November and December.”
Kiki Vandeweghe on the matter: “Could they have won more games letting the veterans go, retarding the growth of a Durant?” Vandeweghe asked, rhetorically. “Yeah, they probably could have won a few more games, but that’s not the path they chose. It took them two years to get there; we’re trying to do it within a year, but it’s a tried-and-true method (of) almost force-feeding your guys. And that’s what they did in Oklahoma, they force-fed their guys and they got good results.”
Elie Seckbach with more on Kevin Durant, and some time with Jeff Green and James Harden:
Kevin Durant back in the MVP race on NBA.com: “This spot is a revolving door of the remaining talent in the league, and Durant supplants Tim Duncan simply because The Race thinks Durant is a more explosive player — though that could change by next week. Durant’s 38 points in a win over Phoenix on Wednesday is evidence enough that he is one of the best in the league, and should be for years to come. The Race wonders if he’ll continue his career in Oklahoma City or if he’ll ultimately wind up somewhere else.”
Fran Blinebury says OKC is on the “nice” list: “Nice. A year ago at this time, the Thunder had three wins and an interim coach who was trying to lead them out of the darkness. Now the young core of Kevin Durant, Jeff Green and Russell Westbrook has its heads above water and are swimming to a bright future.”
Susan Bible on Eric Maynor: “Among those in attendance at Maynor’s second game in Oklahoma City, a familiar face, University of Oklahoma head basketball coach Jeff Capel, was spotted courtside. “That’s my dude,” says Maynor about his VCU recruiting coach. “We’re going to hang out a lot while I’m down here. He’s maybe 15, 20 minutes away so I get to go to some OU games, check him out. It was good to see him in the arena tonight.”