2013-14 Season: Oklahoma City Thunder weekly grades for December 7 - December 14

The Thunder finished up an impressive week of basketball, going 4-0. Here is how each player performed!

The Thunder made quick work of near all challengers this past week, going 4-0 and move into a virtual tie with the Spurs in the West (OKC won the first matchup against San Antonio). Here is how we grade each Thunder player during the week.

Game 1: Thunder rout East leading Pacers, 118-94

Game 2: Thunder hold off Hawks on road, 101-92

Game 3: Thunder dominate shorthanded Grizzlies, 116-100

Game 4: Thunder overwhelm Lakers, 122-97

***

Durant_medium

KEVIN DURANT Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 4 28.8 8.5 4.5 1.0 2.0 3.3 22.0
JUAN Grade_aplus_medium
Kevin Durant dropped a 30-piece on three of the four teams the Thunder faced this week, and although that's probably the norm for Durant, it was the effectiveness in which he did it with this week. KD gave Paul George all he wanted against the Pacers, and then dominated teams like the Lakers and Atlanta. He had a acceptable number of turnovers and he was just awesome this week.
SHERMAN Grade_aplus_medium A week after I personally felt that Durant's "Player of the Week" award was a bit premature and should have gone to LaMacrus Aldridge, he put up a staggering display of efficiency and production in leading his team to 3 dominant wins. In particular, he took Paul George head on and didn't let up the rest of the week, culminating in his domination of Kobe Bryant and the Lakers.

Westbrook_medium

RUSSELL WESTBROOK Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 4 21.5 7.5 11.3 0.0 2.3 3.8 19.0
JUAN Grade_aplus_medium Russell Westbrook had three really good games this week. To give you an idea of just how good he is, the only game that he was "Alright" he was one rebound short of a triple double. Westbrook's assist's totals were good this week and with a 4-0 week, the team needs to see more of that.
SHERMAN Grade_aminus_medium
I echo everything above, but I'm withholding perfect marks for Westbrook because he still shot under 45% from the floor and 23.8% from 3-point range, despite attempting over 5 of them per game. Westbrook is really letting it fly early in games, which would be fine if he were making more of them. A little more patience would go a long way.

Ibaka_medium

SERGE IBAKA Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 4 15.8 7.5 1.5 1.5 0.8 2.0 16.0
JUAN Grade_bplus_medium After his fast start, it's kind of unfair to expect more from Serge Ibaka than what he did during that span, but just like the AT&T commercials, you just want more. All-in-all, Serge is still producing really good numbers.
SHERMAN Grade_b_medium
The grading curve continues to rise for Serge Ibaka, who is making a habit of generating double-doubles. He recorded his 11th of the season, which means that he is now recording 1 double-double every 2 games. This is on top of the fact that OKC won their four games by a double digit average. His shooting percentage has fallen off a bit, but not enough to seek him to do anything differently.

Sefolosha_medium

THABO SEFOLOSHA Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 1 4.0 2.0 1.0 1.0 0.0 0.0 19.0
JUAN Grade_c_medium Thabo Sefolosha had the tough task of checking Paul George, despite not being 100% and he did a fairly good job in slowing him down. Him and Durant took turns with George, but the Thunder cruised in that game. Sefolosha is one of my favorites and as long as he's healthy in May, it's all good.
SHERMAN Grade_c_medium
Thabo Sefolosha only played in one game this past week, as he had sustained an injury in the win over the Pacers. In that one game, he was as productive as anybody, helping slow down Paul George and the Pacers' efficient offense. In his absence, speculation has begun as to whether Sefolosha could possibly be supplanted next season by Andre Roberson. It is time for Thabo to put those rumors to rest.

Perk_medium

KENDRICK PERKINS Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 4 4.0 4.0 2.0 0.3 0.8 1.3 8.8
JUAN Grade_aminus_medium
Much like Sherman is about to point out in the comment below this, Kendrick Perkins went up against top-flight bigs in the league. My grade is mostly because I don't think any other center on the roster (yes, that includes Steven Adams) would have had such a good effort against those guys in a single week. His stats don't show it, but Perkins was really, really solid.
SHERMAN Grade_bplus_medium
It might seem odd to suggest it, but a guy who averaged 4 points and 4 rebounds had a very solid week. Kendrick Perkins had to deal with Roy Hibbert, Al Horford, and finally Pau Gasol in the week and held his own each time. Further more, Perk is becoming the go-to guy to deliver backdoor passes; he hits Westbrook with at least one per game. Perk may never justify his contract, but for the time being, he's earning his keep. On top of that, Perk finished the week with a net positive in his +/-.

Adams_medium

STEVEN ADAMS Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 4 3.3 4.5 1.5 1.3 0.5 1.3 6.0
JUAN Grade_cplus_medium
Foul troubles plagued Steven Adams this week and it showed why having Perkins on the roster until Adams learns the NBA game and gets more experienced against top guys is important. But Adams will soon learn about all these little things we criticize and he'll be really good.
SHERMAN

Grade_bminus_medium

Not a particularly eventful week for Kiwi Strong, but that has a lot to do with his recent foul trouble struggles. One of the things that big men in particular have to learn about the league is how to avoid fouling. In particular, PnR defense can be brutal on young guys who have not got the timing down yet, and too often Adams is getting caught late, which leads to being out of position, which means his next position is on the bench next to Scott Brooks.

Lamb_medium

JEREMY LAMB Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 4 11.3 2.8 0.5 0.3 0.5 1.3 4.3
JUAN Grade_b_medium
Jeremy Lamb had a decent week. Usually when the team blows people out constantly, the stats of the role players get better. His shooting has been improving and if that trend continues, the Thunder might just be unstoppable.
SHERMAN Grade_b_medium Jeremy Lamb averaged doubt digits in points this past week, which to be totally honest does have something to do with the fact that OKC played in 3 blowout wins. To his credit though, what I like to see is that a) his shooting percentages are rising; and b) his production scales with his minutes per game, which stood at 23 per. Also, for the record, Darnell Mayberry's nickname for Lamb & Jackson is terrible. Sounds more like a pharmaceutical firm than an NBA duo.

Collison_medium

NICK COLLISON Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 4 2.8 3.8 1.0 1.3 0.0 0.8 4.8
JUAN Grade_b_medium Nick Collison had a good week. He had to take on the duty of giving Perkins a rest whenever he needed it in order to slow down the bigs the Thunder played this week. He did a good job in providing solid minutes. Plus, I just really like him on the court.
SHERMAN Grade_b_medium I am happy to report that Nick Collison did not attempt a single 3-pointer this past week and for that I am thankful. I don't mind if a big man like Nick or Ibaka gets set up for the occasional buzzer-beater 3, but as a general part of the Thunder offense, it doesn't make sense to me because they are so much better at so many other things. Nick is at his best simply setting other guys up, and as we see the offense from both the 1st and 2nd teams improve, we know that Collison is getting it done. Just stay away from Kanye.

Jackson_medium

REGGIE JACKSON Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 4 16.0 4.0 3.0 0.0 0.8 1.3 16.0
JUAN Grade_a_medium
Reggie Jackson is still my favorite player this year (aside from the big names) He comes in, handles his business and does it with swag. He continues to dominate every single second-unit he goes up against alongside with Jeremy Lamb. This is nothing but good news for the Thunder, and bad news for the rest of the league.
SHERMAN Grade_a_medium I look back at Jackson's week and I can't really think of anything that he could have done substantially better than he already did. Sure, you could wish that he shot a higher percentage in this game or that, but sometimes even the best players have off-nights shooting the ball. More importantly, Jackson looks both completely in control of the 2nd unit as well as unflappable while playing with the starters. On top of that, RJ has now hit a 3-pointer in 10 consecutive games, a major weakness of his that he is rapidly remedying.

Jones_medium

PERRY JONES III Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 3 6.7 3.0 0.3 0.3 0.3 0.7 4.7
JUAN Grade_a_medium I absolutely love seeing Perry Jones III out there on the floor even if the game is already won. He's been a true pro and I think he has a nice ceiling. Getting him ready right now will help the Thunder down the road this season. Hopefully it doesn't come at the expense of another player getting hurt.
SHERMAN Grade_aminus_medium
PJIII's production is way up this week, so we need to caveat everything with the fact that OKC had 3 blowouts so his totals were going to be slightly inflated. That said, Jones is quickly becoming an offensive energy guy, someone who can either knock down a 3-pointer or get an offensive put-back. This is the exact sort of thing that a contender needs from their 11th man off the bench, knowing that even in sparse minutes he can come in and make a play that matters.

Fisher_medium

DEREK FISHER Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 4 1.8 0.5 1.3 0.0 1.0 1.0 4.3
JUAN Grade_b_medium Derek Fisher sort of goes unnoticed sometimes and that's exactly what everyone wants. He's been a good leader and he's been solid on the court. The role he's playing this season is phenomenal and hopefully Scott Brooks doesn't mess that up.
SHERMAN Grade_cplus_medium
Fish keeps plugging along and giving OKC exactly what they need from their 3rd string PG. He's not hoisting a lot of shots and his presence on the court simply acts as a stabilizing force. He's getting the right amount of minutes (down from being radically overplayed 2 seasons ago) and it is crazy to think that it is he and not his friend and former teammate Kobe Bryant that has the best chance to earn a 6th ring.

Thabeet_medium

HASHEEM THABEET Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 2 1.0 2.5 0.0 0.0 0.5 0.5. -5.5
JUAN Grade_c_medium
Hasheem Thabeet rode the pine for two games and then he showed out his fro in two blow outs. He had a -5.5 +/- rating in limited minutes, and that's pretty much what he will do to a team.
SHERMAN Grade_c_medium Thabeet keeps giving the Thunder exactly what they need - a bench guy who is willing to cheer on his teammates while occasionally posting a dental selfie.

Roberson_medium

ANDRE ROBERSON Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 3 3.7 4.3 0.3 0.7 1.0 1.0 1.0
JUAN Grade_a_medium Andre Roberson was sent down to the D-League last week and got called up again with the injury suffered by Sefolosha. Roberson stayed ready and provided some good minutes for the Thunder in three starts. I don't really know what the plan for him is this season, but it's nice to see that the young man can stay ready and wait for his number to be called.
SHERMAN Grade_a_medium Roberson is such an enigma for the Scott Brooks experience that there is practically no precedent for it. He is a rookie that was a late round draft pick that has no real discernible offensive skillset at this point, yet here is Brooks entrusting Roberson with 3 starts, 12 minutes per night, the responsibility to check Kobe Bryant, and pulling it all off. Simply outstanding for Brooks to give Roberson the shot and props to the rookie for making the decision pay off.

Brooks_medium

SCOTT
BROOKS
Coaching
Grade
JUAN Grade_aplus_medium The coaches grade pretty much depends on what the team's record was this week and well, the Thunder were pretty damn good this week. Scott Brooks hasn't had to do much in-game coaching this season because the Thunder have crushed a lot of their opponents. 19-4 gets you an A+, Mr. Brooks.
SHERMAN Grade_aplus_medium If you run the tables on the week while getting All-Star efforts out of your All-Star players while generating 3 blowouts and exercising full use of your bench, including meaningful minutes to two rookies and two 2nd year guys, you have had a good week. Scott Brooks had a good week.

Logo_medium

TEAM GRADE RECORD OffRtg DefRtg AstRatio REB% TS% PACE +/-
(Advanced Stats) 4-0 113.7 93.9 19.7 57.6% 60.3% 101.2 18.5
JUAN Grade_aplus_medium Well, this one is easy. When you absolutely crush the Pacers and finish the week at 4-0, that's an accomplishment. The team looks to be having fun and they have that feel that last year's team really didn't have. They enjoy each other out there and it could be because of all this winning. Whatever the reason is, we all hope this level of play continues because it's really fun.
SHERMAN Grade_aplus_medium Is there anything the Thunder could have done better this week? Probably, as the narrow escape from Atlanta comes to mind. However, the name of the game is to win, and OKC did that 4 times in a row, 3 of which came over playoff teams. The Thunder's effort against the Pacers on Sunday night practically gets them an 'A' alone, but routing nearly everyone else puts the bow on it.

*All player images via US Presswire

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