Nick Collison is blogging for GQ and wrote about his summer: “Instead, to wait out the summer, my five-year-old daughter Emma spent the months with me in Seattle; my version of an entourage consisted of my kid and a nanny. My mindset quickly shifted from things like “How is the pick and roll coverage with Jason Kidd handling different from Jason Terry?” to thoughts like “I hope the other kids are still too young to make fun of her hair because I sure as hell have no idea what to do with it.”
From Elias: “One night after scoring 30 points on Opening Day, Kevin Durant put 33 on the board in the Thunder’s 104-100 win at Minnesota. Last season, Durant also scored 30 points in each of his first two games. Only four other players in NBA history have scored 30+ in their first two games in two consecutive seasons. Elgin Baylor and Wilt Chamberlain both did it in 1961-62 and 1962-63. Karl Malone did it in 1991-92 and 1992-93, as did Allen Iverson in 2005-2006 and 2006-2007.”
Of note: In 19 minutes, Byron Mullens had 10 points on 5-7 shooting for Charlotte Monday night. I watched Mullens a lot in camp with OKC and thought he had a shot to be something. His offensive game looked more confident and smooth than ever.
Darnell Mayberry’s postgame thoughts: “Someone asked me on Twitter last night whether we should be concerned about Serge Ibaka. My answer was yes. Something’s not right with him. He doesn’t look like the up-and-coming force we saw last season. It’s much too early to draw conclusions, but it’s definitely worth keeping your eye on. Unlike last night, Ibaka’s intensity was at least there tonight. He was trying, which is more than I could tell he was doing against Orlando. But he just looks lost and confused most times and complacent at others.”
A few days old but Zach Lowe of SI.com on KD and Rose being different: “The fact that Durant plays in a tiny market and Rose a large one is perfect, since it pokes yet another huge hole in the NBA’s swiss cheese “competitive balance” arguments. The appeal of large markets and beach cities over small markets and cold weather will always exist; you cannot legislate it away without the kind of major rule change — a hard cap, unlimited max salaries, franchise tags — that would have cost the owners a full season of labor talks to get. Big markets have had a slight advantage, but the formula remains the same, regardless of market size: draft a franchise player, work like hell to make the right decisions around him and get very, very lucky.”
Zach Harper of HoopSpeak: “Russell Westbrook didn’t respect Ricky Rubio’s presence on the court. He didn’t respect his presence as someone to talk about. He was upset when asked questions about Rubio. He was upset when the crowd cheered for Rubio. He wanted to make sure everybody knew that HE was the All-Star and RUBIO wasn’t. He burned Ricky on backdoor cuts. He powered through Ricky in transition for buckets and fouls. With every score, he glared in Ricky’s direction. With every bit of success the Wolves enjoyed during the competitive fourth quarter, Westbrook made sure to dismiss Rubio’s contribution by smiling when Ricky dare accept his assignment and defend Russ.”