NTTB Rumblings – 03 Nov 2017


Michael Kinney (Clutch Points) on how the Thunder will likely use their 2-way contracts: “In the past, according to NBA rules, players who were signed to an NBA team were allowed to go back and forth to the D-League as many times as they wanted. The Thunder used the system liberally with players such as Josh Huestis, Reggie Jackson and Perry Jones. NBA teams can still use their rosters in the same way, but with the addition of two-way contracts, you could see that phasing its way out.”

Jonathan Tjarks (The Ringer) says the Russell Westbrook Show is over. In it’s place, is the Thunder variety hour: “In the first few weeks of the season, Westbrook is doing everything he can to make the adjustment process as smooth as possible. The guy who shattered the record for usage rate in a season is gone. Westbrook is shooting less both Carmelo and George are, and his 15.4 attempts per game is the lowest since his second season in the league. The result is a more balanced offense. Instead of Oklahoma City’s second-leading scorer (Victor Oladipo) taking 10 fewer shots a game than Westbrook was, their Big Three all average between 15 and 18. Westbrook still holds the ball for most of the game, but he’s looking to pass as much as he is to score. He is not a volume shooter anymore. The guy whose extreme athleticism redefined the point guard position suddenly has the numbers of a traditional point guard. Westbrook is averaging career highs in assists (11.7) and field goal percentage (47.2).”

Albert Dadson (Thunderous Intentions) on Jerami Grant’s contributions off the bench: “Grant has been in the lineup with Carmelo Anthony and Paul George and that can be a big factor to his stats exploding. With Anthony and George being the main offensive focus, that lets Grant move around the court freely and get put-backs, easy dunks and open shots. His 3-point shooting has not been as good as it was last year when he shot 37.7 percent from 3 but he has proven before that he can hit the shot.”

Rob Mahoney (Sports Illustrated) on Westbrook’s shift from destroyer to creator: “There is a subtlety to this version of Westbrook, so much so that he is effectively averaging a triple-double again but in relative quiet. Seven games in is a bit soon to project end-of-season stat lines, but it should be accepted at this point that this—leading the league in assists, averaging around 20 points per game, and snatching down double-digit rebounds on a nightly basis—is just something a prime Westbrook can do. If anything, the triple-doubles (clerical errors notwithstanding) have seemed to come more easily. Having the ability to pick his spots has given Westbrook a far more efficient shot profile and the ease of even greater assist opportunities.”

Jimmy Do ( chronicling Carmelo Anthony taking a family out grocery shopping: “For Anthony, this was a chance to not only help out with the grocery bill, but also to connect with the family by delivering smiles, laughs and hugs all around. “A lot of times when you’re not hands on you don’t feel the effect. So to get a chance to be intimate in a spot like this with the family here,” said Anthony. “We can go aisle to aisle in a supermarket and pick food. It means a lot more than just giving somebody something.”

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