Sean Deveney of Sporting News: “Part of the challenge for Durant’s teammates is making sure he understands that if he does, in fact, need to score 40 in order for them to win, no one is going to hold that against him. One of the criticisms Krzyzewski frequently levels against his teams from the sideline is that they can be too unselfish, that sometimes it is good for the team to let their individual brilliance shine through. The big-time scorers who have done this before—James, Anthony and Bryant—seem comfortable with the balance between creating their own shots and just being a cog in the Team USA machinery.”
Neil Paine of ESPN.com built a Team USA that “fits” and Nick Collison made it. So did KD too, of course: “Surprised to see KD in this slot over a certain Chosen One? You shouldn’t be. Durant averaged more points per minute than LeBron James with a higher true shooting percentage; he also took a greater percentage of his team’s shots while on the floor, and he’s better at working off the ball (which will come in handy alongside a ball-dominating point guard like CP3). If the criteria is a great, efficient pure scorer in the mold of a traditional “Alpha Dog,” Durant fits that bill better than anybody else in the NBA right now, including James.”
Coach K: “It’s not awkward at all,” Krzyzewski said. “You have a performance to give, are you doing it on a Wednesday matinée or a Saturday night? It’s not who you are playing. You should never judge how you’re going to perform on who you’re potentially going to play against. You are a person performing, your team is performing. How do you do it? You never want to get in the habit of just getting by, because eventually, you don’t get by. So our goal is to make sure play hard, have good habits and we’re as sharp as we can be.”
The Lost Ogle has new sideline reporter suggestions for the Thunder: “BJ Wexler: This makes perfect sense. As the long time host of the OETA movie club, BJ is skilled at providing viewers with interesting facts and tidbits about what they are watching on TV. That’s a skill that will translate nicely to a career as sideline reporter. Plus, it would be fun to hear the Gremlin’s theme during his post game interviews.”
Spain beat Australia today as Serge Ibaka had eight points, two rebounds and a block in 16 minutes.
The Thunder Girls audition finals are Thursday and judging them will include Wayne Coyne and “Miss Oklahoma 2012.” That’s what the release said. I guess she doesn’t have a name.