Thunder @ Lakers preview (Game 56 of 82)

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  • When: Thursday, 08 February at 9:30 pm CST
  • Where: Staples Center, Los Angeles, CA
  • TV: TNT/FSOK
  • Radio: WWLS The Sports Animal (98.1 FM, 640 AM, 930 AM (Spanish))
  • Line: OKC -3.5 | O/U – 216.5

The Set-Up: For many teams, the game after the trade deadline is a battle of attrition. The players that were traded away, of course, will not be available for their old team. And, unfortunately, because of travel and needing to get physicals, won’t be available for their new teams either. With injuries and transacted players, some teams are left with rosters the size of playoff rotations. Continue reading Thunder @ Lakers preview (Game 56 of 82)

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Thunder Trade Postscript

Many went into Thursday’s NBA trade deadline thinking the Oklahoma City Thunder would definitely be buyers in the trade market. When their defensive ace, Andre Roberson, went down with a season-ending patellar tear, many around the league thought Thunder GM Sam Presti would try to find a replacement via trade. While the Thunder didn’t necessarily have a large cache of assets, there was a sense this season would not be business as usual when it came to player transactions.

But, alas, the Thunder decided to stand pat and hold on to the assets they do have and the players currently on the roster. The thing about the trade deadline is that you usually don’t hear about the trades that didn’t get consummated. I’m more than sure that Presti did his due diligence around the league, but either the prices were too high or the cupboards weren’t as stocked as he thought they would be. Continue reading Thunder Trade Postscript

NTTB Rumblings – 08 February 2018

img_4063Sam Amick (USA Today) on Paul George’s upcoming free agency decision: “He’s well aware how his choice will affect the lives of others, from his actual family to this Thunder group that wants so badly for him to return alongside Russell Westbrook. So he picks his words wisely, even goes over old interviews to make sure he’s saying what he means and meaning what he says. Yet as the 3 pm EST trade deadline nears on Thursday, and with the Thunder (31-24) set to face the very Lakers team that is widely seen as the No. 1 threat for his services, there’s one thing that is helping him be more at ease: he’s not going anywhere just yet – if ever.”

Russell Westbrook and Paul George are here to take your basketball.

Paul George had a big fan at the Warriors’ game: Former Fresno State Bulldog Derek Carr of the Oakland Raiders.  Continue reading NTTB Rumblings – 08 February 2018

OKC Thunder 2018 Trade Deadline Primer

The trade deadline primers for team blogs are usually released about a week to two before the trade deadline. And I was planning on doing the same, but then I thought to myself, “Hold up. Oklahoma City Thunder GM Sam Presti hardly ever makes a trade that isn’t on the day of the deadline. In fact, he’s usually one of those GM’s that’s on the phone making deals until the very last second of the deadline.” With that in mind, I said to myself, “Self, we’re not releasing this article until February 8th (a.k.a. the trade deadline).”

And if you think I spend an inordinate amount of time talking to myself, you may be right. In my defense, I can’t really help it. My internal voice is the “stay thirsty, my friends” Dos Equis guy.

If I had written this article two weeks ago, it would be completely null and void because of the Andre Roberson season-ending injury that occurred 11 days. If I had written this article a week ago, I wouldn’t have seen the general cluster (you know what) the team had become in the five games after the Roberson injury. And if I had written this article before Tuesday night’s thrashing of the Golden State Warriors in their arena, then my judgement could have been clouded by the negativity of the four-game losing streak the Thunder had heading into the Warriors’ game. Continue reading OKC Thunder 2018 Trade Deadline Primer

Lakers vs. Thunder preview (Game 54 of 82)

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  • When: Sunday, 04 February at 1:00 pm CST
  • Where: Chesapeake Energy Arena, Oklahoma City, OK
  • TV: ABC
  • Radio: WWLS The Sports Animal (98.1 FM, 640 AM, 930 AM (Spanish))
  • Line: OKC -9.5 | O/U – 220.5

Luke Walton on why the Los Angeles Lakers struggle against the Oklahoma City Thunder:

 

 

Pre-game sights: Continue reading Lakers vs. Thunder preview (Game 54 of 82)

NTTB Rumblings – 02 February 2018

img_4063Russell Westbrook had an incident with a fan after the Nuggets game: “You gotta be able to protect the players, man,” he said. “The fans are obviously there to enjoy the game, but they can’t come onto the floor. That’s totally unacceptable.”

Nick Gallo’s (OKCThunder.com) post-game recap: “After giving up 40, 32 and 32 points in the first three periods, the Thunder’s defense suddenly tightened up in the fourth quarter behind a grimy, scrappy effort by the second unit and scintillating performances by Paul George and Russell Westbrook down the stretch. With just 1.4 seconds left in regulation, the Thunder had allowed just 20 fourth quarter points.”

In addition to being in the All-Star Game, Paul George will also be in the 3-point shooting contest.  Continue reading NTTB Rumblings – 02 February 2018

Thunder @ Nuggets preview (Game 52 of 82)

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  • When: Thursday, 01 February at 9:30 pm CST
  • Where: Pepsi Center, Denver, CO
  • TV: TNT/FSOK
  • Radio: WWLS The Sports Animal (98.1 FM, 640 AM, 930 AM (Spanish))
  • Line: OKC -1.0 | O/U – 217

The Set-Up: I’ve noticed in my adult years that even an hour of change in my routine can mess me up for about a week. It doesn’t matter whether I gain an hour of sleep or lose an hour of sleep, it messes me up all the same. Now imagine if over a seven day period, you change time-zones five times. That’s enough to mess up anyone’s circadian rhythm, especially a routine-based athlete.  Continue reading Thunder @ Nuggets preview (Game 52 of 82)

NTTB Rumblings – 01 February 2018

img_4063Fred Katz (Norman Transcript) on this latest stretch of games for the Thunder which has been particularly grueling: “The Thunder are in the midst of a brutal portion of the schedule. They change time zones between five consecutive games — with four of those contests making up a couple of back-to-backs. It’s hectic enough that coach Billy Donovan has decided to forego a couple of morning shootarounds, doing so before Tuesday’s eventual loss at the Washington Wizards and and before Thursday’s game at the Denver Nuggets.”

Colin Ward-Henninger (CBS Sports) on the possible teams vying for Greg Monroe’s services: “Go ahead, try to name the Thunder’s backup center. Trick question … they don’t have one. Jermai Grant has been filling in at center for the second unit, but at 6-foot-8, 203 pounds, he’s not exactly an earth-mover out there. The lineup of Grant, Paul George, Alex Abrines, Raymond Felton and Patrick Patterson has a net rating of minus-33.6 in 85 minutes this season — not good.” Continue reading NTTB Rumblings – 01 February 2018

NTTB Rumblings – 31 January 2018

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Bruce Jenkins (San Francisco Tribune) on the Thunder being a contender to dethrone the Warriors: “That was the goal in OKC, but it simply wasn’t working. Only when a clear decision was made — this is Westbrook’s team, and he will rule the offense — did this team elevate itself into relevance. “I think the fact that Russ is just playing, not trying to defer to anybody, just letting us play off him — we needed that,” George told reporters recently. “We need that Russ out there. Let the rest of us figure it out.”

A very informative article by Eric Pincus (Bleacher Report) on the Thunder’s future salary cap implications: “With George, along with Westbrook at $35.4 million, center Steven Adams at $24.2 million, Roberson at $10 million and Anthony at $27.9 million (with an early termination option), the Thunder could be looking at paying between $250 and $300 million for their roster. Should Anthony opt out, that would help solve the team’s budget crisis, but that doesn’t appear likely.” Continue reading NTTB Rumblings – 31 January 2018

Thunder @ Wizards preview (Game 51 of 82)

okc logo atWashington-Wizards

  • When: Tuesday, 30 January 2018 at 6:00 pm CST
  • Where: Capital One Arena, Washington D.C.
  • TV: FSOK
  • Radio: WWLS The Sports Animal (98.1 FM, 640 AM, 930 AM (Spanish))
  • Line: OKC -2.5 | O/U – 219

The Set-Up: Consistency was something the Oklahoma City Thunder struggled with early in the season. They’d play like the best team in the world against the likes of the Golden State Warriors, but then lose by 15 to the struggling Dallas Mavericks. The talent on this team is evident, that is for certain. But it’s a talent that consists of veteran alpha scorers. Guys who tend to get bored when the level of competition on the opposite end of the court is not on par with them.  Continue reading Thunder @ Wizards preview (Game 51 of 82)