Tonight we find out if the Thunder's newfound confidence is ready for the pressure that Kobe Bryant and the Lakers big men will bring to their home court. This game could very well be a playoff round preview.
Truehoop's Beckley Mason pulls aside DT's Royce Young for five minutes of banter on the Thunder model (oh, how I do love the Thunder Model) and discuss how a team like the Bobcats could ever hope to replicate such a thing. My take - remove Kevin Durant from the equation and just consider what Presti did after he drafted Durant. He went into the draft and chose his kind of players in Russell Westbrook, James Harden, and Serge Ibaka. Without Durant, maybe OKC wouldn't be a contender, but I would argue that they'd still be a potential 45 win playoff team.
Derek Fisher's approach is probably the right one. The OKC culture is already championship-caliber. What they need now is subtle guidance and encouragement from a man who has the experience.
Kendrick Perkins, huh? I dunno...it seems like from a personality standpoint Perkins is already the same age as Clint Eastwood.
Of course he is. The man is a good-looking dude.
And not a moment too soon, right Portland?
This is a great piece that gets into the mindset of players who have just been traded. I think it is something that us non-pro-sports people have a hard time comprehending. Perhaps the closest experience might be those who are in the military.
Lost in the hullabaloo amidst Linsanity, Melo-drama, and Amare's back is the fact that Tyson Chandler is still arguably the best post-defender in the NBA and makes everyone around him better.
Apart from the great reference to Buster Bluth, this post encapsulates the Lakers well. And then I realize, this year's Laker squad is just another rendition of every Lakers squad.
This performance of surgical precision is a big reason why I fear the Spurs over any other WC team. This is exactly the way they closed out the Thunder.