Isaiah Freedman (Welcome to Loud City) on whether the Thunder are currently title contenders: “OKC can match up with anyone defensively, and while their offense has not been the most efficient in the league (it hovers around league average), they are only a Russ or PG explosion away from rendering that stat useless. We still have not seen this team at full strength, and if Roberson can get back to playing all-world defense by the time the playoffs come around, the Thunder will be a true force to be reckoned with.”
Patrick Redford (Deadspin) on Paul George’s 2-way ability and how it’s helping the Thunder: “It’s working! Really well! George is averaging 24.3 points, 7.8 rebounds, 4.3 assists, and 2.2 steals per game, all of which are career-highs. All of the other advanced metrics point to this campaign as George’s best statistical season, which is impressive coming next to Westbrook, a man who likes to have the ball in his hands at all times, always, unconditionally. To his credit, Westbrook has backed down this year, using the rock on only 31.9 percent of Thunder possessions, a rate comparable to his first All-Star season in 2010-11. Westbrook also leads the league in assist percentage, and has cleaned up his shot selection. As he’s chilled out, George has stepped up, and their games complement each other perfectly; Westbrook explodes into the lane and creates chaos, George hits shots, cleans shit up, and exploits mismatches.” Continue reading Thunder At A Glance – 12 December 2018
Jonathan Tjarks (The Ringer) on how the best offense for the Thunder is a great defense: “Oklahoma City is built around an overwhelming amount of length and athleticism. After getting off to an 0-3 start, it doubled down on both its strengths and weaknesses by benching Patrick Patterson for Jerami Grant, an all-world athlete and inconsistent shooter. Grant, at 6-foot-9 and 220 pounds with a 7-foot-3 wingspan, is a hyper-athletic wing who can defend players at all five positions. A frontcourt of Grant, Steven Adams, and Paul George stifles opposing teams, regardless of who the point guard is. That trio has a net rating of plus-13 in 373 minutes with Westbrook and plus-14 in 313 minutes with Schröder.”
Royce Young (ESPN) recaps the Thunder’s win against the Jazz, where Paul George excelled and Russell Westbrook struggled: “I just talked to [Westbrook] in the back [of the locker room] and told him, ‘It’s an 82-game season,’ and I told him, ‘I got your back,'” George said. “He’s had me on plenty of occasions where I had an off night and Russ took over offensively and put the game on his shoulders. I’m his counterpart, and I’ve got to do the same for him. It’s a long season, there’s going to be games like that. Special thing, good thing about this team: We’ve got two guys that can fill it up on a nightly basis. But he’s fine, it’s nothing he’s gotta get coached through. He’s been a scoring leader. He knows how to score the ball.” Continue reading Thunder At A Glance – 11 December 2018
On the latest episode of The Weekly, the Topic: Thunder crew discuss the following topics:
- Looking back at the 3-game road trip from last week
- Player of the Week
- Khris Middleton trade ideas
- Houston struggling, smiles abound
- The OKC Blue are the top team in the G-League
- People imitating Russell Westbrook, but Russ receiving no credit
- Looking at the next 4 games against tough Western Conference opponents
- And more…
Thank you for listening to our podcast. You can catch the post-game recaps on the 2018-19 Schedule page on this site and on Thunderous Intentions. You can listen to us anywhere you get your podcasts. Please leave us a 5-star review on Itunes if you would like. That really helps with our ratings on Itunes. You can follow us and interact with us on Twitter (@OKCTopicThunder). Thank you for listening, and as always, Thunder Up!
Just going to put this here. You guys need to give this recap a listen. Historic comeback, a 4th quarter eruption, and a monster triple-double.
Michael Shapiro (Michael Shapiro) on Paul George showing his worth on the Thunder: “Playing next to Westbrook has shined a light on George’s game without the ball in his hands. Much of the praise he’s received in his Oklahoma City tenure springs from outside the box score. George is an elite cutter and a dangerous lob threat. He’s a quality spot-up shooter from beyond the arc. Defensively, George had a case to be on the All-Defensive team last year, finishing second in the league in steals. Yet for all of his peripheral strengths, George’s sheer scoring ability has been overlooked.” Continue reading Thunder At A Glance – 06 December 2018
Russell Westbrook made an appearance on The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon, where he explained the idea behind his “rock a bye baby” celebration.
Continue reading Thunder At A Glance – 05 December 2018
ESPN’s panel of basketball experts answered some questions in regards to the Western Conference: “I expect the Oklahoma City Thunder to be the second-best come May. Oklahoma City currently sports the West’s second-best differential behind the Denver Nuggets, and that’s despite Russell Westbrook missing eight games due to injury. The Thunder will still add stopper Andre Roberson to what’s already been the league’s best defense on a per-possession basis and have plenty of playoff experience.”
ESPN has OKC number 5 in their weekly power rankings: “The Thunder did exactly what they were supposed to in a light week, winning both games against the lowly Cavaliers and Hawks by a combined 32 points. They have now won 14 of 17 games to quietly inch closer to the top of the Western Conference. Paul George has been outstanding, averaging 25.2 PPG, 9.0 RPG, 4.6 APG and 3.0 combined steals and blocks during his last 10 games to keep the Thunder competitive even when Russell Westbrook has had to sit.” Continue reading Thunder At A Glance: 04 December 2018
Erik Horne (NewsOK) on the continued rehabilitation of Andre Roberson: “But Thursday had some of the most promising displays from Roberson in the Thunder’s post-practice sessions the media is allowed to witness. In the past month, the Thunder staff has ramped up Roberson’s conditioning drills in the non-contact, post-practice sessions, often with Donovan and general manager Sam Presti watching intently.”
Erik Horne (NewsOK) on Patrick Patterson holding a film festival for students in Oklahoma: “Patterson is teaming up with the deadCenter Film Festival to judge a movie contest for students around the state of Oklahoma. In Patterson’s “Pat Presents Oklahoma Student Film Contest,” Patterson will judge high school and college student produced short film submissions. The contest is open to all students currently enrolled in an Oklahoma high school, tech center, college or university.” Continue reading Thunder At A Glance – 30 November 2018
Check out the latest episode of The Weekly by the Topic: Thunder Podcast crew. On it, they discuss the Thunder’s current 3-game winning streak, the Warriors drama, KD to OKC, the Houses of Harry Potter, and look ahead to the four games the Thunder play this week.
Royce Young (ESPN) on the Westbrooks welcoming their two bundles of joy, Skye and Jordyn Westbrook: “Westbrook, who was a full participant in a contact practice on Friday and went through the team’s shootaround on Saturday, appeared set to return against the Suns. However, he left after the team’s shootaround to fly to Los Angeles to join his wife, Nina, for the birth of their daughters on Saturday night.” Continue reading Thunder At A Glance – 19 November 2018