Kyle Wagner (FiveThirtyEight) on the effect Andre Roberson’s absence is having on the team: “But the Thunder have yet to capitalize on the additional space available with Roberson out. Westbrook has played well in some ways, creating at James Harden/Chris Paul levels on the pick and roll, and poorly in others, shooting just 43 percent from the field and 18 percent from the three in the games since Roberson’s injury. George has been hot from the three — he’s hit at least five 3-pointers in four consecutive games — and has averaged 29.6 points on a 62 effective field goal percentage through those 10 games. But Anthony has gone absolutely dormant, and both he and Westbrook missed two games to injury.”
Kevin Durant initially had reservations after signing with the Warriors (a little on the NSFW side language-wise): “Take this story about the days after Durant decided to sign with the Warriors, a time when he was feeling the full brunt of the Internet’s fury about his perceived betrayal of Oklahoma. He and Kleiman were in China for a weeklong tour of the country sponsored by Nike Basketball, and the flak he was taking from people in Oklahoma City who had once professed deep affection for him was overwhelming. “To have so many people just say, ‘F$%# you,’ that really does it to you,” Durant tells me, still clearly anguished. “Because I truly had invested everything I had into the people I played for…. And for those people that I know and love and trust to turn their back on me after I was fully invested in them, it was just…more than I could take. I was upset.”
A new week, starting a day later. Short work week. Let’s get it started. Here are the Rumblings.
A look at what Paul George will add to the Thunder via advanced statistics: “Anthony Morrow looks like something of a small sample size outlier — he’s known for his shooting not his driving prowess, and those numbers would likely have reversed if he had played more minutes. Westbrook ranks slightly above average in both areas. Alex Abrines was a solid shooter but didn’t offer much as an off-the-dribble creator. Jerami Grant’s numbers look extremely interesting but, again, small sample size is a concern here — Grant averaged 0.84 points per drive on 155 drives last season after averaging 0.72 points per drive on 523 drives over the previous two seasons. We see the same thing with his catch-and-shoot numbers — 39.4 percent on 109 attempts last year, 29.7 percent on 279 attempts his first two seasons.”