Is it just me, or did last night's game make my heart race for all the wrong reasons?
Durant returned early in the 4th apparently no worse for wear, but I can't imagine Durant won't spend a lot of time today getting to know the Thunder's medical staff.
Alrighty then, today's links after the jump...
Load up on Kevin Durant, He's Ready - from newsok.com
Bring it on. That’s what Kevin Durant essentially is telling opposing defenses this season. Bring on your double teams. Bring on your traps. Bring on your switches and your beefiest bigs and smartest and strongest smalls. Durant insists he’s seen it all before. "It’s been like that for three years," Durant said. "It picked up a lot during the second half of the season last year, and I expect it to be the same."
It's nice to see Durant be just a little assertive when talking about himself and the team, a little "Bring it, we can handle you" attitude.
However, I love how Durant goes out of his way to extole the skills of his supporting cast, basically warning opponents that as good as he is, if they focus on Durant too much they are going to get burned by the likes of Jeff Green, Russell Westbrook, Daequan Cook and Morris Peterson. However, if opponents move to clamp down on these threats, that'll make things easier on KD.
I am not so sure about Durant's statements that Sefalosha has improved as a shooter, and anyone can look at his 0/3 shooting from last night and one missed free throw to see why.
So, I guess this is Durant's way of saying "Y'all screwed."
Thunder pick up contract options for Westbrook, five others - from si.com
The Oklahoma City Thunder have exercised their contract options for six players, including starting point guard Russell Westbrook. The Thunder announced Monday that they picked up the fourth-year option on Westbrook and forward D.J. White and the third-year option for guards James Harden and Eric Maynor, forward Serge Ibaka and center Byron Mullens.
It's not the new contract Westbrook likely will get in the future, but it keeps him and a lot of our bench talent here through the end of next season.
Another side consenquence of this move by the Thunder front office is that it locks a lot of young (and soon to be expensive) talent up in contracts until after the new labor agreement is in place. Not that I expect that to affect how much money players like White and Mullens would be getting if the Thunder chose to re-sign, but Westbrook would definately be impacted.
Now, what to do with Jeff Green?
Russell Westbrook gets nod over Derrick Rose - from newsok.com
Point guards Russell Westbrook and Derrick Rose ended up with 28 points each in Wednesday night's season opener, but give the significant edge to Westbrook in the Thunder's 106-95 victory over Chicago. Not only did Westbrook get the win, he got his point total while taking less than half the number of shots that Rose did.
Even Zorgon gave Rose the advantage over Westbrook during his game preview, so to see Westbrook go 53% shooting versus Rose's 38% brings a warm glow to the icy cockles of my heart.
Now then, in the "interesting to me" department....
Morris Peterson, who was inactive last night against Chicago, seems to have more than a passing interest in shooting viral videos. I'm not sure if anything he's done so far qualifies as "viral" yet (the above video is a few months old), but there's a lot of potential there for both fun and insight into the Thunder locker room.
I'll be keeping an eye on his web site, www.mopete24.com, to see what we get.