Have you been wondering lately what former Thunder great Robert Swift was up to? I know I do often. Well here’s your answer. He plays in Japan for the Tokyo Apache and shaved off his hair. I just thought you might like to know.
Kelly Dwyer of BDL on the 3-point contest: “With that said, I say it’s Durant’s contest to lose. Because of his range and athleticism, he’s the perfect candidate for an exhibition like this. There are other shooters who I’d want spotting up behind the 3-point arc, wide open, with the game on the line, but for a competition where you have to fire off 25 shots in a limited amount of time, from sideline to sideline? My money’s on Durant.”
Henry Abbott of TrueHoop on the contest: “Know who shoots the most 3s in the NBA this year? Jason Richardson, who has made 40 percent of his 305 3-pointers. Somewhere he’s tossing his tear-streaked stat sheet into a mud puddle and screaming “Kevin Durant?” Durant shot far less, and didn’t hit at nearly the same rate. Keep Reading…
I know this just counts as one, but I think we should petition the NBA to give Oklahoma City three losses for this game. Because it was that bad.
Seriously, it was a complete disaster. Turnovers: 24 (a season-high). Missed free throws: eight. Field goal percentage: 41.2 percent. Games in five nights for the Grizzlies: four. Minutes for Memphis’ best player, Rudy Gay: zero. Points for Tony Freaking Allen: 27. Good shots at the buzzer for the Thunder in a tie game: zero.
I feel like I could write this whole things with stats like that.
Early on, it looked like the Thunder was going to take care of business the way they should. They held a pretty good 10-point cushion throughout the first half. But the Grizzlies outscored OKC 30-17 in the third quarter, mainly because they went 13-14 from the free throw line to the Thunder’s 0-0.
The Thunder never executed well in the fourth quarter, but found themselves with the ball and a chance to win with the game tied at 95-95 with 21 seconds left. And I think we all knew what would happen. A bad shot at the buzzer was coming and there was nothing we could do about it. Keep Reading…
Offensive Rating: Thunder – 110.8 (5th), Grizzlies – 106.2 (19th)
Defensive Rating: Thunder – 108.6 (17th), Grizzlies – 104.9 (9th)
Pace: Thunder – 92.9 (12th), Grizzlies – 92.2 (15th)
View from the enemy: 3 Shades of Blue
UPDATE: Rudy Gay is out for Memphis tonight. And despite being listed as “doubtful” Serge Ibaka is playing through a rib injury.
The Grizzlies are back in town just a couple weeks after coming to Oklahoma City. The season series is tied at 1-1 and no matter what, these two teams always seem to play a pretty good game. Part of it is because Rudy Gay and Kevin Durant are both terrific players and they guard each other. Another is because Memphis has a big edge inside against OKC which makes up for Durant and Russell Westbrook. Keep Reading…
The NBA announced All-Star Weekend’s 3-point contest participants and Oklahoma City’s Kevin Durant is one of them.
Joining Durant will be reigning 3-point champion Paul Pierce of the Celtics and teammate Ray Allen (who will be the all-time 3-point shot maker in history by then). Cleveland guard Daniel Gibson, Miami forward James Jones and Golden State forward Dorell Wright round out the field.
Durant is a career 35.8 percent 3-point shooter but as we know, can cook as well as anyone. He’s had months of 50 percent from deep and after a slow start this year, has his percentage up to 34.7.
Gibson actually has the highest career pecentage of the group at 42.6. Allen has made 39.8 percent of his career 3s, Durant 35.8, Wright 38.3, Jones 40.0 and Pierce 37.0. Allen has hit 2,559 in his career and the only other player in the field with at least a thousand is Pierce, who has hit 1,297. Between Durant, Gibson, Wright and Jones, their total is 1,513.
It’s pretty cool that Durant is participating though. Basically, the Thunder will own All-Star Weekend. Serge Ibaka is in the dunk contest and Rookie/Sophomore game. Durant is in the 3-point contest. Russell Westbrook and KD are in the actual All-Star Game. It’s just going to be an OKC party in L.A.
Chris Sheridan in a chat yesterday when asked if he thinks OKC is making a deal: “I would say they are in the best position of practically any NBA team to make a serious upgrde somewhere, because they have Mo Peterson’s expiring $6.2 million contract plus the rights to a Clippers No. 1 pick to use as trade chips. Plus, they appear to be the quintessenial “one player away” team.”
Daniel Leroux of Real GM trying to get Kevin Love to OKC: “That said, Oklahoma City can make Minnesota an offer they can’t refuse. Part of what differentiates Love and Griffin in terms of trade possibilities is the blossoming of Michael Beasley and the rocky relationship between Love and coach Kurt Rambis. I’m not saying the Wolves are or should be looking to trade Love- the sole issue at point is that they would not hang up the phone immediately if Sam Presti came calling.” It’s fun, but Minnesota’s not trading Love. Keep Reading…
With this season’s edition of the Thunder, we all can’t stop talking about one thing. It’s the one thing that keeps us all from feeling like this team is truly a contender.
Deee-fense. Clap clap.
It’s been mediocre all season and downright awful in stretches. With what the team did last season defensively, watching them give up 60 points in a half, allow 46 percent shooting nightly and nearly 40 percent from 3, it’s easy to be frustrated. Something is missing defensively. Whether it’s Ron Adams or just an overall commitment to that end by the players, there’s been a big step taken backward.
But the same thing keeps getting repeated. Despite that, the team is 33-17. The team is still first in the Northwest and fourth in the West. The team is winning. It’s almost like nobody understands how. Without great defense, how are these guys doing it? IT MAKES NO SENSE.
Offense. Scary excellent offense.
Consider this: Since Dec. 1, the Thunder have the league’s best offense in terms of efficiency. Overall, the Thunder’s scoring 110.8 points per 100 possessions, good for fifth overall in the league. If you want a traditional measure, Oklahoma City is averaging 104.6 points per game, also fifth in the league. Keep Reading…
I think there have been some long shot hopes that Dwight Howard would look at OKC in 2012 when he’s a free agent. And while I have heard he’d love to play with Kevin Durant, it looks like other than re-signing with Orlando, his top three options are the Lakers, Knicks and Nets.
NBA.com power rankings: “The Thunder don’t have to worry about their defense if they keep scoring like they did last week. They shot 54 percent and scored 122.5 points per 100 possessions in wins over the Hornets, Suns and Jazz. Russell Westbrook averaged 20.7 points and 9.7 assists, while shooting 6-for-7 from 3-point rage.” Keep Reading…