For now, Cole Aldrich is the Thunder’s starting center.
Exhale though, just for the preseason. And maybe only for the first game, depending on how things go.
The Thunder’s preseason schedule kicks off Wednesday in Hidalgo, Texas, against the Houston Rockets. And with Kendrick Perkins out until at least the regular season rehabbing his wrist, it’s an open audition for his backup.
Aldrich was expected to have the role all to himself anyway, but with Scott Brooks saying he will start Wednesday, it’s all but confirmed that the job is Aldrich’s to lose.
As for shooting guard, Brooks said he hasn’t decided on a replacement for Thabo Sefolosha, who is temporarily out resting a thigh injury. The expectation is for Daequan Cook to start though as James Harden said last week he’s been running with the second unit and not the first.
Brooks said the starters will be limited in the preseason opener, playing less than 20 minutes.
“I think everybody’s going to get an opportunity,” Brooks said. “Our starters are not going to play heavy minutes. I can’t imagine those guys playing over 16 to 18 minutes, but maybe right at that number. … It’s a great time for them to get out there and show what they can do and how they do it within a team concept, but there are only so many minutes you can play within a game.”