Darnell Mayberry: “If you’re a Thunder fan, you’re probably of the opinion that Westbrook is just plagued by that ankle sprain. If you root for the Celtics, you probably are loving what Avery Bradley did defensively against Westbrook. The truth is probably somewhere in the middle. Bradley did a terrific job against Westbrook, but you can’t ignore how Westbrook harnessed much of his typical unbridled energy. I mean, one rebound? That’s happened only four other times this season. We didn’t see the real Westbrook. Yes, Bradley played a role. But Westbrook is nowhere near 100 percent. Today, he gave what he had and it was good enough.”
Awful Announcing on teams moving announcers off the floor: “It really is all about the money. At $1,500 per seat, the Wizards are bringing in a cool 24 grand per game, assuming all 16 seats sell out. With 41 home games per season, that comes out to just shy of $1 million in extra profit per season, at the low cost of making games that much less watchable for fans at home due to commentary that’s off the mark. Putting the announcers at such an odd angle just seems odd, especially in a sport like basketball. Imagine if a baseball broadcast team was positioned halfway up the first base line to call a game as opposed to being behind the plate, or if a football crew was positioned at the 20 instead of midfield. I’m really not sure the distance is such a huge deal in this situation, but the angle is a definite issue, and hopefully the Wizards are able to correct that going into next season.”
Related: I see myself say bye-bye to my seat here soon.
Berry Tramel: “Garnett nailed his first two shots, but even that was a bad sign for Boston. They came from 20 and 22 feet away. Those were the only two shots he made against Perkins all game. In 14:05 of playing time with Perk also on the court, Garnett was 2-of-8, and only one of the attempts was closer than 18 feet. Garnett was 3-of-11 with Perkins on the bench, with all three makes at the basket and only two of the misses outside the paint. Perkins kept Garnett away from the basket. That’s how games are won.”
From Elias: “Kevin Durant scored 23 points and made all 11 of his foul shots while grabbing 11 rebounds as the Thunder turned back the Celtics. Durant joined DeMarcus Cousins (January 14) and Tyson Chandler (February 20) as the only players to go 11-for-11 or better from the free-throw line and collect 11 or more rebounds in an NBA game this season.”
Celtics Hub: “Bradley did a superb job containing Westbrook and keeping OKC’s offense stuck in neutral most of the afternoon. He also made a pretty pocket pass to Wilcox for a basket and stepped into his jumper with confidence (50% from the field). The extra burn he’s getting in Rondo’s absence will pay dividends next season. You can see him growing as a lead guard from week-to-week.”
Celtics Blog: “If I had told you before the game that Boston would win the rebounding advantage (including 5 offensive boards by Bass!), hold Westbrook to 15 points, Durant to just 23, and the Thunder as a whole to just 91 points, you’d think we had a pretty good shot at winning the game right? Turns out, not so much. Despite being down just 3 points at the end of the 3rd, the Celtics couldn’t buy a bucket down the stretch and the Thunder pulled away for a comfortable 12 point win.”
Bill Simmons lists Perk as his 18th worst contract: “He’s headed for his second-straight Charlie Ward Trophy, given annually to the player on an NBA contender who plays far too many minutes for that contender, to the utter confusion of just about everyone. What’s the appeal of playing four-on-five offensively10 and slowing down an athletically potent team if you’re not playing Memphis (Gasol), San Antonio (Duncan) or the Lakers (Howard)? It’s a great question. I don’t have an answer. And yes, if Oklahoma City could have dumped Perkins’s contract, they never would have traded James Harden and they’d be going for 70 wins right now.”
It frustrates me: That last sentence there from Simmons is so incorrect to what the situation was, and it frustrates me because a lot of people get that wrong. Not amnestying Perk had little to nothing to do with trading Harden. Re-signing Harden might’ve meant that eventually the Thunder did that, but since Harden’s extension wouldn’t have kicked in until next season, which is when the luxury tax starts, Perk’s contract had no impact whatsoever on it.