Here’s Russell Westbrook fairly nasty reverse jam from yesterday. He’s showcased his athleticism pretty well thus far in Turkey, but this one is pretty much just plain ridiculous.
Tommy Craggs for Slate with an interesting piece on Kevin Durant and his reported humbleness: “Of course, that’s what really matters in an age that judges athletes foremost on the quality of their salesmanship. LeBron packaged himself poorly. Durant has sold himself well, or at least has given of himself so little that the very idea of his reticence could be fashioned into a cudgel against the Very Bad Thing of the day—ego run amok. More than anything, Durant offers the moralists a clean bank shot at LeBron and his cohort. He will remain useful in this role for a time, and then one day he’ll go and do some Very Bad Thing and shatter all our precious illusions. We’ll have no choice but to pick out a new unicorn, a new cardboard idol to worship, and all the while we’ll wonder how we got the last one so wrong. Did we ever know Kevin Durant at all?”
Dime says KD will be the all-time scorer: “KD’s fundamental skills are at such a high level, I feel even if he loses a step physically, he will still be highly productive. Durant doesn’t dominate a game by being the best athlete, he dominates with his high skill set and his size that creates natural mismatches. He isn’t famous for out-sprinting everyone to lead the break or simply jumping over people. He is definitely not physically overpowering the competition. He just has the intelligence and the skills to make the correct move at the right time to put the points on the board.”
Royal Ivey continues to prove correct the Thunder tattoo continuum.
Nenad Krstic played extremely well for Serbia yesterday notching a double-double (14-10).
It’s about half over at the time this went up, but Chris Sheridan on the Tunisia-USA game: “Stephen Curry has been sloppy with the ball, no more so than when he threw an atrocious behind-the-back bounce pass to nobody yesterday on a 2-on-1 break against Iran. Russell Westbrook could be the answer, as Coach K recognizes that he has experience playing off the ball at shooting guard when he was at UCLA. Westbrook has shot 11-for-20 from the field over the first four games but has not yet attempted a 3-pointer, so it bears watching how he performs today against Tunisia — a game in which the Americans have been installed as a 45.5-point favorite.”
Dance teams in Turkey are getting censored says Pete Thamel: “A dance squad from Ukraine, known as the Red Foxes, has performed at Ankara Arena during a majority of the games involving the six teams in Group C. But in each of Turkey’s past three games, one of which was attended by Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan and another by the country’s foreign minister, Ahmet Davutoglu, the dancers have disappeared. The speculation here is that the scantily clad dancers were pulled to avoid performing in front of Turkish government officials, but no one can agree as to why.”
A Q&A with Serge Ibaka from Hoopnotes: “What do you think of your first NBA season? From a personal standpoint, I am satisfied. I think I improved a lot. Particularly during the playoffs where I gained the confidence of coach Brooks. I ended the playoffs’ games against the Lakers. The coaches were happy with my production and my defense on Odom…”