Darnell Mayberry: “Pump your brakes if you’re going bananas. But by all means pay attention to whether the Thunder is sustaining the level of play it has set out to this season. And over the past three weeks, not even the biggest optimist can claim that’s been the case. Oklahoma City is just 3-3 in its past six games. But even those wins, and a few victories before them, the Thunder had significant trouble stringing together four quarters of quality basketball.”
Very interesting stuff from Henry Abbott of TrueHoop on Steve Novak’s defense: “What Synergy does, and what most NBA teams pay mightily for, is employ an army of people to watch every second of hoops in the NBA and other leagues and categorize every single play various ways — for instance, as a spot-up, isolation or pick-and-roll. Then those plays are fed into an ever-changing database where you can look up all kinds of things that were never available any other way. Statistics aren’t the final word in much of anything in basketball, especially when it comes to defense, which is really not well-converted into numbers anywhere. Any individual defensive ratings are guaranteed, at this point in history, to miss a lot.”
Spencer Hawes tweets: “So the hotel is flooding in okc. Don’t remember this ever being an issue in seattle.”
Andrew Gilman of Fox Sports Southwest on Westbrook’s style: “Ask Russell Westbrook what he thinks of people who are critical of his game and he’ll answer the same every time. He doesn’t care. Ask Russell Westbrook what he thinks of others’ opinions of his fashion sense and he’ll answer the same every time. He doesn’t care about that, either. Westbrook’s game is a violent mix of speed and size, a matchup nightmare for opposing NBA defenses. His clothing choices are similar. No predictability and a matching nightmare. Seems both are getting noticed quite a bit. Not that Westbrook cares. It wouldn’t be his style, after all.”
Ric Bucher: “Russ Westbrook wants nothing more than to beat the Miami Heat. He might just want it too much. A league source who knows Russ well believes that for the Thunder to avenge their loss to the Heat in last year’s Finals, Westbrook can’t go to his reflex, which is to take matters into his own hands when the game gets wobbly. It is a reflex that makes him both a great player and a highly criticized point guard. That’s how he went at it in last year’s finals and again on Christmas Day. “Russell has to trust his teammates more,” the source said. “He does in most other games, but he just wants to win so bad against Miami, he doesn’t as much.'”
Back to the D-League for Perry Jones, Daniel Orton and DeAndre Liggins.
I just have to say this: I posted this video of a Thunder fan reaching out and touching Kris Humphries and it became a hit, racking up hundreds of thousands of views. Cool. But what’s not cool is how it unleashed the cesspool that is the internet to take over in the comments. The things people have said are completely appalling. I know, I know. It’s the internet. But I just feel completely awful — and responsible — for this innocent nice lady taking entirely unnecessary abuse just because of a spontaneous funny moment that happened at a game she was at. I disabled the comments which hides all of them, but it’s too late. Check other sites that have the video and the comments are just as bad. So to that Thunder fan I want to genuinely apologize. Seriously, I’m very sorry.