Did you know the NBA schedule maker is only one person? Kevin Arnovitz of TrueHoop talked to him: “This year, for instance, we had an outer limit of 23 back-to-backs and four “four out of fives.” At some points during the process, there were teams with more than that. You look at those things and you correct them before the schedule is final. “Oh, this team has 25 back-to-backs? We can’t go with this. We have to find a way to get them down.”
Kelly Dwyer of Ball Don’t Lie ranks the top 30 point guards and Russell Westbrook is No. 7: “I hesitated putting him this high for a good reason – Russell is still figuring this game out, and he shot the Thunder out of some games last season. But his defense keeps him in the mix, consistently. Westbrook can defend and contribute in other areas (rebounding, even screen setting) that a litany of other point man just cannot. 16 points, eight assists, and five rebounds last season, and the guy doesn’t even turn 22 until mid-November.”
Looking at a positionless world: “Durant is the evolutionary next step from the era of Kevin Garnett and Chris Webber, power forwards who could bring the ball up and initiate an offense or anchor a defense from the middle of the paint. And KG and C-Webb were evolutionary steps from Magic Johnson, who played point guard with a forward’s body. But Durant is not the only such hybrid in a League where it’s getting harder to put players in a box.”
The swap of Kevin Pritchard for Rich Cho was voted the second worst offseason management move by ESPN’s panel of 93.
The rookie photo shoot was yesterday and as usual, some unintentionally hilarious photos were taken. Trey Kerby of Ball Don’t Lie rounds them up. Don’t worry, Cole Aldrich gets zinged a little too.
A preview to NBA 2K11. The trailer has a number of Thunder players making appearances and I must say, the animation looks impressive. Jeff Green’s jumper looks spot on and Russell Westbrook moves like he really does.
Kevin Durant on his blog: “I’m really looking forward to this whole experience. It should be a lot of fun. I’ve never been to Europe, never been to Spain, never been to Turkey or Greece. I’m looking forward to that and just being able to interact and be around some of the best players in the league. Guys like Rudy Gay, Iguodala, Rajon, Lamar…just to be with those guys and learn, it’s going to be pretty cool and it’s going to help me.” Never been to Spain, KD? But you’ve been to Oklahoma, right?