Loud Links: June 1, 2009

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I’m officially in love! Nope, not that icky gooey Valentine’s Day kind of love. The Oklahoma City Thunder released details for the new scoreboard for the Ford Center, and I am head over hills in love with it. Viewing games next year will be so much easier. Next season keeps getting more and more exciting.  Other links include tickets on sale, cover boy Blake Griffin, and Malik Rose getting nasty? Read on…

THUNDER: New Scoreboard Designed With Fans in Mind
After months of research, backing from Oklahoma City taxpayers and the underlying goal of upgrading the fan’s in-game experience, the Thunder on Monday unveiled designs for its new $3.9 million scoreboard that will be one of the leading scoreboards in NBA and NHL arenas.

Oklahoma City Thunder unveils plans for state of the art scoreboard | NewsOK.com
The scoreboard will feature 10 full-motion video panels, six more than the arena’s current scoreboard, an LED ring at the top to display video and text and two tilted video panels at the bottom, angled toward the court so that fans seated courtside and in the lower seats can have a better viewing experience.

THUNDER: New Ford Center Scoreboard Photos
After months of research, backing from Oklahoma City taxpayers and the underlying goal of upgrading the fan’s in-game experience, the Thunder on Monday unveiled designs for its new $3.9 million scoreboard that will be one of the leading scoreboards in NBA and NHL arenas. "Through video, the use of color, the multi-tasking opportunities, I think it will be more vibrant, more dynamic," said Brian Byrnes, Thunder Senior Vice President of Ticket Sales & Service. "Those are the words that will resonate when people think what’s really the difference between a scoreboard. This is so much more than a scoreboard. It’s a real video presentation, which I think just really enhances the whole experience of being at the game.

THUNDER: Thunder Hosts Spurs in Exhibition Contest (Tickets on Sale Now)
The Oklahoma City Thunder announced today that it will host the San Antonio Spurs in an exhibition game at Austin, Texas, on Oct. 20 at 7:30 p.m. The game, which will be played at the Frank Erwin Center, marks the first time Thunder forward Kevin Durant will play a game on the campus of the University of Texas since Feb. 28, 2007. Durant spent one season with the Longhorns, earning consensus Player of the Year honors, before being drafted in the first round of the 2007 NBA Draft (second overall) by the Oklahoma City franchise.

Malik Rose: Let’s get nasty | NewsOK.com
"When I got here, I was happy to see there weren’t cliques, like five guys hang out and these three don’t talk to anybody," Rose said. "Everybody was joking around. "On the flip side, practices were too fun. A little elbow or a little fight here or there in practice, being physical, pushing and shoving is good. But when you step off the court, it’s great to get back to being best friends, being close, hanging out and joking."

Q&A with D.J. White | NewsOK.com
How are summer workouts going? "Good. I’m ready to go right now. I only played in seven games. I have a lot of energy. The plan is to keep working out and then play in Orlando (in the summer league)."

Dime #49 on sale now: Blake Griffin is cleared for takeover | Dime Magazine (www.dimemag.com) : Daily NBA News, NBA Trades, NBA Rumors, Basketball Videos, Sneakers
s the L.A. Lakers and Orlando Magic get ready to decide the NBA Championship later this week, there are 28 other teams whose primary concern right now is this month’s NBA Draft. And while Kobe and Dwight are the marquee superstars of the moment, the League’s immediate future revolves around Blake Griffin, the inevitable No. 1 overall pick in the draft and the cover athlete of Dime #49 — our NBA Draft Preview issue — which hits newsstands this week across the country.

NBA Draft: Elton Brand 2.0? - Basketball News & NBA Rumors -
This year, there was a sure-fire, jaw-dropping shocker waiting for the teams who reached out to Pittsburgh's DeJuan Blair. He stepped off the NCAA court for the last time a few weeks ago weighing 315, but weighed in on Thursday at a svelte (and chiseled) 276. "I've just been trying to get in shape and get my body right," said Blair, who has spent the past month at IMG Academies in Brandenton, Florida. "Get my conditioning up and get my game right. Work on aspects that I didn't have. Try to polish everything around. . .I'm going to try to stay around there (that weight). I'm going to keep doing what I do, keep doing the same things. I'm trying to become a force and make a lot of teams happy."

Fran Fraschilla: NBA draft's top 5 European prospects - ESPN
Rubio is the best international guard prospect since the late Drazen Petrovic 20 years ago and, possibly, the best 18-year-old in the world right now. Rubio became the youngest player to ever play in the Spanish ACB at the age of 14, and has become an Internet video sensation the past four years. He also made an impressive showing for Spain in the 2008 Olympics.

DraftExpress: Playoff Retrospective: Rajon Rondo
"Just try to run the show," Rondo advised Westbrook. "Never try to do too much. You pick your spots when to attack. And just do the intangibles on the court. Offense will come." -Celtic’s Rajon Rondo offers up advice on Russell Westbrook, by Darnell Mayberry -3/30/2009 Based on that second quote, it isn’t surprising to see how Rondo has come as far as he has. Understanding what he’s good at and realizing what he needs to work on, Rondo is mature beyond his years. He’s not a vocal leader that is going to get in someone’s face to fire than up, but he’s going to do everything in his power from a competitive standpoint to help his team win. After averaging roughly a triple double during the playoffs, there is no question that he’s willing to step up when it matters and lead by example.

Q & A with Thabeet

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