Zach Lowe of The Point Forward with a must-read: “The Thunder are 4-3 after the 109-103 victory, but they have a statistical profile closer to a 3-4 or 2-5 team, according to Basketball-Reference. Only two teams have a worse field-goal percentage, and the Thunder’s vaunted defense ranks just 24th in points allowed per possession. If not for their incredible foul shooting — and their huge number of attempts — the Thunder would be under .500 and getting scrutinized for a poor start. One of two things is going to happen: Either the Thunder will see their foul-shot attempts regress to the mean, or they’ll become one of the most prolific free-throw shooting teams in modern league history.”
Nate Parham of SBN Seattle on something P.J. Carlesimo said: “If there was one bright spot in that final year in Seattle, it was undeniably Durant and the star potential from his play on the court. Everybody from the folks working the concession stands to the head coach knew that. But as Kevin Pelton of Basketball Prospectus described back in 2008, Carlesimo just never figured out how to get the most out of Durant leading the young star to stagnate to some extent in his second year. The bottom line is that recognizing you have talent and knowing how to maximize it are just two different things.”
Evidently there was something not nice said in GQ about OKC and here’s a response letter.
Not Thunder related but a nice piece by Lowe on the Heat: “The Celtics are, right now, a better team than Miami, and the Heat are dealing with some serious problems. Bosh is playing soft, they’re undersized and they are having trouble defending physical big men inside. But this notion that the Heat are already dead, that they won’t be able to figure this stuff out, that James doesn’t have “it”? Come on. It’s Nov. 12. Remember how everyone buried the Celtics last season when they went 27-27 over the last 54 games? And remember how everyone felt so silly about it when they were six minutes away from winning a title? The Heat aren’t dead. They’re struggling, and they are not the favorites. But they’re not dead, and they won’t forget the aftermath of Thursday’s game.”
Blazersedge previews the game: “The Blazers have not beat a team that currently sits above .500 this year but the Thunder have only beaten one: the Blazers. This is not an impossible task for Portland.”
Again, not Thunder related, but if you’re an Oklahoman that listens to sports talk, you’ll enjoy this.