Thunder weekly grades: Serge Ibaka, Derek Fisher lead the way; who else stepped up?

This past week was a near-perfect score, but the one blemish cost them what should have been a 3rd win. How did each player do?

The Thunder were oh so close to running the tables again, but they thought the week was over 1 quarter too early and suffered a tough loss to the Magic. How did each player do?

Game 1: Thunder get a measure of revenge on Grizzlies, 86-77

Game 2: Thunder hold off shorthanded Timberwolves, 106-97

Game 3: Thunder lose to Magic on walk-off dunk, 103-102

***

Durant_medium

KEVIN DURANT Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 3 28.7 7.3 9.0 0.7 0.7 5.0 +9.7
JUAN Grade_bplus_medium
Kevin Durant nearly averaged a triple-double this week, but his turnover numbers were a little high. If he would have dominated the fourth quarter against Orlando, he would have probably finished with a better grade than this.
SHERMAN Grade_bplus_medium
Kevin Durant's offensive numbers have come down ever so slightly this past week, mostly because he hasn't needed to put up the gaudy scoring numbers to help get his team the win. His high point was definitely his overall game against the Grizzlies, ad much-needed performance as any for Durant. The downside though was his poor 4th quarter against the Magic, which enabled their comeback win.

Westbrook_medium

RUSSELL WESTBROOK Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 0 n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a +1000
JUAN Grade_a_medium
I can't wait to see Russell Westbrook come back and contribute for this team. This has been a fun season and it's about to get a lot funner.
SHERMAN Grade_a_medium
Take as much time as you need, Russell Westbrook. Your teammates are holding the fort down. And I really hope you're planning on attending the All-Star weekend. We'll be there, and we really want to see what clothing ensemble you have prepared.
Sefolosha_medium

THABO SEFOLOSHA Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 3 9.0 4.0 2.0 0.3 1.0 0.7 +7.0
JUAN Grade_b_medium
Thabo Sefolosha has had a couple of really nice weeks recently, especially defensively. Sefolosha still has to find his offense a little more consistently, but the return of Westbrook should help him get some more looks.
SHERMAN Grade_aminus_medium
As much as Thabo Sefolosha has struggled with his shot, I loved the way he played this past week and how he's really starting to disrupt opposing offenses. His work against the Timberwolves and Grizzlies in particular were some of his finest work. Furthermore, even though his 3-pointer has been off, he was still the guy whom the Thunder were looking for in key spots at the ends of games.

Ibaka_medium

SERGE IBAKA Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 3 20.3 8.3 1.0 3.0 0.0 1.7 +6.3
JUAN Grade_a_medium
I think Serge Ibaka has been spectacular all season long. I love how he's elevated his game when Durant and the team needed him most. The Thunder are going to have a lethal "big 3" when Westbrook makes it back on the court.
SHERMAN Grade_aplus_medium
Serge Ibaka continues to have a remarkable run this year, continuing to expand his game week by week. It has really been something, especially since his 2-man game with Durant is so lethal. He is providing everything the Thunder need from him, including an increased amount of scoring at the rim.
Perk_medium

KENDRICK PERKINS Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 3 3.7 8.0 1.0 1.0 1.0 2.3 +4.0
JUAN Grade_b_medium
This was a week that the Thunder needed Kendrick Perkins out on the floor. They played a couple of front court-loaded teams and he held his own. He might not get much burn against faster teams, but he's a good commodity to have when the Thunder meet some of these bigger teams.
SHERMAN Grade_bplus_medium I thought Kendrick Perkins played well this week, as his rebounding numbers are up and he played a big role in helping to shut down Gasol and Randolph. He held his own against Nikola Vucevic and wasn't the primary defensive problem in the Magic's comeback. On top of that, he's been involved in some much better looking PnR plays, getting into open spaces on the court and finishing.

Jackson_medium

REGGIE JACKSON Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 3 14.7 2.3 5.0 0.0 2.0 1.7 +5.3
JUAN Grade_c_medium
Before the Magic game, I was going to give Reggie Jackson a better grade (happened with a couple of players), but it's especially disappointed with Reggie, because that's a team he should dominate against. The best way to gain confidence is to pound on the worst teams in the league. The only good thing is, Jackson seems to enjoy playing the good teams.
SHERMAN Grade_bminus_medium Reggie Jackson seems to run either hot or cold. He's either having a dynamite game against the Timberwolves or he's struggling to weak games against weak opponents like the Magic, which then necessitates more Fisher time. Consistency is the thing Jackson needs to pursue the most.
Lamb_medium
JEREMY LAMB Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 3 6.3 2.7 2.0 0.3 1.3 1.0 -3.0
JUAN Grade_b_medium
I've been a big supporter of Jeremy Lamb all season and I think the potential on him is huge. Numbers were down this week, but he's still showing signs of progress.
SHERMAN Grade_bplus_medium Even though Jeremy Lamb's numbers dropped off this week, I still really enjoy watching what he's bringing to the court every night. If anything, I wish the team would use him more on offense. Take the end of the Magic game, for example. It was Lamb grabbing several contested rebounds and actually challenging the final game winning play of the game, something his teammates did not do.

Adams_medium

STEVEN ADAMS Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 3 1.0 3.7 0.3 1.7 0.3 1.7 -1.3
JUAN Grade_cplus_medium
Steven Adams is still learning how to play and number-wise he's average. He had a tough task guarding some premier big-men, but he had some decent block numbers this week.
SHERMAN Grade_bminus_medium
Steven Adams had an inconsistent week in terms of his opportunity to play. He got 23 minutes against the Grizzlies, which probably bodes well for Adams because they have their own big men in Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol, and Adams got a good taste of how to guard both of them. He's still playing a bit too aggressively though and picking up cheap fouls.
Collison_medium

NICK COLLISON Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 3 2.7 2.7 1.0 0.7 0.0 0.7 0.7
JUAN Grade_cplus_medium
Really "blah" week for Nick Collison this week, which is unusual. I'm going to give him a 'C+' mostly because he's awesome.
SHERMAN Grade_c_medium
Mr. Intangibles only getting a +/- of 0.7? Respectfully, Nick Collison didn't have as big a week as he did previously, it was mostly par for the course. My personal favorite though is that he did not take any more 3-pointers this week.

Fisher_medium

DEREK FISHER Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 3 7.3 1.0 1.0 0.0 0.3 0.7 +2.7
JUAN Grade_a_medium
Derek Fisher has been a pleasant surprise this season for the Thunder. We always knew that his leadership was second-to-none, but now he's starting to make some shots to go with that. He's been terrific in Westbrook's absence and he's been stroking the three-ball like the guy that played for the Lakers. Nothing but good things to say for Fish.
SHERMAN Grade_aminus_medium
Derek Fisher keeps plugging along, providing the stability that the team needs as Jackson continues to run hot and cold. Fisher to his credit shot 54.5% from 3-point range, including a completely ridiculous one against the Timberwolves. There isn't much I can say negatively about the guy. Apropos of nothing, I got a chance to see him post-Wizards game in the locker room. I don't think  I can understate the fact that the dude, who is almost 40, looks like a 25 year old MMA fighter. Impressive.

Jones_medium

PERRY JONES III Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 3 4.3 2.0 0.0 0.3 0.3 0.3 -1.7
JUAN Grade_b_medium
I like the fact that Perry Jones is getting more playing time because I believe in his talent. He just has to find some consistency, which is usually the problem with young guys.
SHERMAN Grade_b_medium
Perry Jones continues to get strong rotation minutes and provide a lot of the defensive support that is driving the Thunder's defensive success. He gives them incredible reach on the perimeter and his defensive recovery time is impressive. He still needs to find a little more consistency with his shot, but for now, Jones is giving the team what they need.

Roberson_medium

ANDRE ROBERSON Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 2 0.0 0.5 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.5 -2.0
JUAN Grade_c_medium
I just can't even keep track of who Andre Roberson is playing for anymore.
SHERMAN Grade_c_medium Andre Roberson did not have any material impact this past week, only getting some mop up minutes.

Thabeet_medium

HASHEEM THABEET Games Played PPG REB AST BL ST TO +/-
(Average Stats) 0 n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a
JUAN Grade_c_medium
Hasheem Thabeet really does look like Joey Bada$$, guys.
SHERMAN Grade_c_medium Alas, there was no Hasheem Thabeet siting on the court. We'll just call it 'matchup issues.'

Brooks_medium

SCOTT BROOKS Coaching Grade
JUAN Grade_b_medium
Much like Sherman is going to point out below, Scott Brooks has an elite team in his hands and part of his responsibility is to beat the bad teams. That wasn't the case against a bad Magic team and it cost him an entire letter grade.
SHERMAN Grade_b_medium Part of being a competent coach in the NBA is compelling your team to beat the teams they are supposed to beat. That almost happened this past week. That is however why I have to dock him a few points this time because the Thunder's 2nd half against the Magic was not one to put on the resume. The team was sloppy, lazy, unmotivated in the end, and it cost them what should have been a win.

Thunder_medium

TEAM GRADE Record OffRtg DefRtg AstRatio REB% TS% PACE +/-
(Advanced Stats) 2-1 105.6 101.4 17.7 53.6% 55.8% 91.91 +5.7
JUAN Grade_b_medium
The Thunder would have gotten an 'A' grade with a win in Orlando on Friday night. Although it being a really disappointing loss, the Thunder are still having a fantastic year and losses like that happen some times. Maybe a loss like that gets them mad and they go on another big winning streak? We'll see how they do against the Knicks on Sunday.
SHERMAN Grade_b_medium The Thunder really should have finished this week 3-0. Even a slight win over the Magic would have been sufficient to pack up and move on, but their final quarter of play for the week was tough to watch. The ending sequence was both stomach churning and cool at the same time, because how often do you get to see a walk-off dunk? What grinds my gears though is how careless they were with the ball and how they abandoned the big advantage they had at the PF position.

*All player images via US Presswire

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