2013 NBA Playoffs: Thunder vs Grizzlies, OKC player grades for game 1

J.A. Sherman

The Thunder take Game 1 of the 2nd round series vs the Grizzlies. How did each player perform?

The Oklahoma City Thunder took a huge game 1 from the Memphis Grizzlies Sunday afternoon, winning 93-91. The Thunder showed exceptional resolve in the 2nd half, despite falling behind by double-digits. Kevin Durant led the way, but he got help. How did each individual player do?

Our game 6 graders are Ramona and Craig.

KEVIN DURANT

35 points on 13-26 shooting, 15 rebounds, 6 assists, 1 steal, 2 blocks, 3 turnovers


Grade Comments
Ramona Grade_aplus_medium KD with a complete game. He showed great patience when shots were not going down. He played great defense on the other end, erasing two shots with a couple of blocks.
Craig Grade_aplus_medium
The entire Thunder team got off to a slow start offensively including Durant but man did he ever respond. Durant in the second half when the Thunder were down double digits Kevin Durant played like the second best basketball player on the planet. Made shot after made shot in the final 4 minutes including the one that put them up for good. He also did work on the glass snagging 15 rebounds. An all around monster game for the super hero know as the Durantula.

REGGIE JACKSON

12 points on 4-8 shooting, 3 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 turnover


Grade Comments
Ramona Grade_b_medium He kept his composure after sitting out most of the 4th quarter and sealed the game with two big free throws. Reggie had some great drives to the baskets and a couple of nice assists.
Craig Grade_b_medium
Like many other Thunder players he was part of key plays down the stretch to help the Thunder pull out the win. He has a tough assignment in this series checking Mike Conley to start the game and at least for one game it did not have a negative impact on his offensive game. He was very close to becoming the goat of this game if Quincy Pondexter is able to make some free throws.

SERGE IBAKA

5 points on 1-10 shooting, 5 rebounds, 1 assist, 3 blocks, 1 turnover


Grade Comments
Ramona Grade_bminus_medium Rough shooting night for Serge, but he had three blocked shots and altered even more. His blocks were enormous since the Memphis bigs are their bread and butter.
Craig Grade_c_medium
If the Thunder had lost the game this grade would have been an F for sure. This was a horrible offensive game for Air Congo who could not buy an outside jumper during the game. Ibaka did come up huge in the 4th quarter with a big block on Marc Gasol that helped spark the Thunder come back.

THABO SEFOLOSHA

4 points on 2-5 shooting, 1 rebound


Grade Comments
Ramona Grade_c_medium
Not a great day at the office, but it didn’t matter much as the Memphis guard struggled to put up points. Huge stop with 3 seconds to go in the game as Thabo makes a play on the ball, causing Conley to turn it over.
Craig Grade_bplus_medium
That play he made on Conley to force the turnover late was a giant play. He earned his grade on that play alone.

KENDRICK PERKINS

2 points on 1-6 shooting, 7 rebounds, 3 assists, 3 turnovers


Grade Comments
Ramona Grade_cminus_medium Perk protected the paint well when Gasol was in the post. He had a turnover late in the game, but got back on defense. The Grizzlies were not able to capitalize on it.
Craig Grade_cminus_medium
A win bumps everyone’s grade up a little bit including Perkins. For the first three quarters Perkins was hindrance than a benefit for the Thunder. Not much of a factor on defense or the glass and kept taking jumpers even though they weren’t close to going in. He did have three assists, which is unexpected because I never expect him to have any assists. The assist to Jackson in the paint was a very good find and execution by Perkins.

KEVIN MARTIN

25 points on 8-14 shooting, 3-5 from 3-point range, 7 rebounds, 1 block, 1 turnover


Grade Comments
Ramona Grade_aplus_medium That Houston trade is back to looking puuurdy good. KMart seems determined to keep his game elevated to ‘amazing.’ This was his most complete game in his Thunder career. Along with red-hot shooting, he put together a great defensive game that included a block and seven rebounds.
Craig Grade_a_medium
I have been very critical of Kevin Martin’s play this post season. His last two playoffs show that maybe he is turning the corner and becoming the second scorer that Kevin Durant and the Thunder need. His 25 points on 8-14 is damn impressive but for me the most impressive part vs. the Grizzlies were the 7 rebounds that all came on the defensive glass.

DEREK FISHER

8 points on 3-7 shooting, 2-3 from 3-point range, 1 steal


Grade Comments
Ramona Grade_b_medium DFish provided the Thunder with great defense and a steady hand on the ball. He knocked down a couple of very timely 3-pointers in the fourth quarter.
Craig Grade_b_medium This is one of the best games I can remember D-Fish playing as a member of the Thunder. Hit a big time three late in the fourth and poked the ball away from Mike Conley on his drive to the basket that lead to Durant’s game winning shot.

NICK COLLISON

2 points, 4 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 turnover


Grade Comments
Ramona Grade_bminus_medium What the stats won’t tell you is how this guy continues to be scrappy and protects the paint. He made some nice put-backs when we were struggling for points.
Craig Grade_bminus_medium
Collison had a very Collison like game. Not the flashiest box score but provided the Thunder with some toughness in the paint when was battling Zach Randolph.

HASHEEM THABEET

0 points, 1 rebound in 4 minutes


Grade Comments
Ramona Grade_c_medium Hasheem didn’t see much time on the floor, but he grabbed a rebound for the Thunder.
Craig Grade_d_medium
Not a factor in the game at all. Only played 4 minutes, which is probably close to his limit.

DEANDRE LIGGINS

0 points in 4 minutes


Grade Comments
Ramona Grade_c_medium DeAndre always energized to enter the game. He also didn’t see much time on the floor.
Craig Grade_d_medium Much like Thabeet he really did not impact the game. He was just kind of there.

SCOTT BROOKS


Grade Comments
Ramona Grade_a_medium Coach seemed to keep his player rotation active, not just going by a timetable, but keeping defensive pressure on the Grizzlies. Great substitutions down the stretch as he shows that he has trust in his bench. Who can argue with a win, especially when it’s hard-fought?
Craig Grade_a_medium Not calling a timeout after the turnover by Conley was the best coaching decision he made all game. By not calling a timeout the Thunder were able to push the ball and Memphis was not able to set their defense. Not to mention the Thunder’s late game execution after a timeout tends to be a boobfest. Well done not screwing it up Mr. Brooks.
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