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Loud Links: 11.10.09


Welcome to the Tuesday edition of Loud Links. It's a little short for two reasons: (1) I'm doing this earlier since I have a busy afternoon/evening; (2) There's a lot of redundant articles after the Orlando game -- basically reiterating the complete dismantling of the Magic by the Thunder. I included some tidbits, but definitely not the onslaught of articles brought about by that win. There's another Kings preview, news on All-Star balloting and who you can vote for from the Thunder, and an article about the newfound Thunder defense (for once not focused on Thabo).

John Rohde: Would've been nice to savor Thunder win | NewsOK.com
[Just another article pointing out how the Thunder buy into the coaching philosophy. Pretty much some common sense stuff on not dwelling on wins or losses but focusing on each upcoming game in isolation -- still, in the NBA it sometimes seems that common sense is pretty darn uncommon, so this is a nice reminder that the Thunder are well-coached and non-headcases.] Thunder coach Scott Brooks wants his players to put a big loss behind them as quickly as possible, and the same also holds true after a big win. The Thunder’s widest victory margin ever inside Ford Center resulted in some wide smiles from the sellout crowd of 18,203. Thunder players smiled, too, but not for long. "Coach tells us after a win, we’ll enjoy it together afterward in the locker room. Once we leave that room, it’s over," forward Kevin Durant said.

Tuesday's game: OKC Thunder at Sacramento Kings | NewsOK.com
[Another game preview, sort of like the CBS one from yesterday. This one comes from NewsOK, so it has some more area-specific info like radio station broadcast information. Insofar as the central content point ... it's basically summed up with: Kevin Martin isn't playing. The Kings are bad with him, but unfathomably terrible without him. At least that's the hope going into the game ...]
Three things to know:
→After shooting just 35.2 percent in the Thunder’s first four games, Kevin Durant has shot 59.4 percent in the past two contests.
→Sacramento guard Kevin Martin, the Kings’ leading scorer, is out at least eight weeks due to a hairline fracture of his left wrist.
→Sacramento has won three of its last four games after starting the season 0-3.

Durant, Green, Westbrook represent OKC on NBA All-Star ballot | NewsOK.com
[All-Star balloting -- if nothing else, this is a good opportunity for Westbrook and Green to get a little more league-wide exposure.] This marks the first time Green and Westbrook made the All-Star ballot. Durant was on the ballot last year, along with Thunder teammates Nick Collison and Chris Wilcox. The NBA All-Star game will be played Sunday, Feb. 14 in Arlington, Texas. Fans can cast votes at each NBA arena, on NBA.com and through mobile phones by texting the player's last name to 6-9-6-2-2 ("MYNBA"), via Web2Go® on T-Mobile phones or wap.nba.com for any wireless carrier.

Thunder storms to easy win over short-handed Magic | WashingtonPost.com (via Reuters)
[Another recap article, same as the rest. The title is one of the interesting bits -- the point is that folks should read too much into this win. It's one game in the midst of a long season and the win came against yet another quality team running short-handed.] Kevin Durant scored 28 points and Russell Westbrook contributed 17 points and 10 assists as the Oklahoma City Thunder stormed to a 102-74 home victory over the short-handed Orlando Magic on Sunday. "That was about as good as we could possibly play," Thunder coach Scott Brooks told reporters before adding he felt the strong ball movement, Oklahoma accumulated 27 assists, had helped contribute to the dominant performance.

Oklahoma City Thunder getting defensive | NewsOK.com
[Nice article getting back to the whole "Wow look the Thunder are better defensively this year!" revelation. For once, this type of OKC defense article doesn't focus entirely on Thabo, awesome though he is.] And after calling his club a "white-collar team" after the blowout, Van Gundy said of the Thunder, "They play very hard defensively. They play with great intensity, and that is the way I would like to see our team play." Etan Thomas said the team is benefiting from the many monotonous days of defensive drills in training camp. Footwork. Close outs. Help defense. Rotations. Assistant coach Maurice Cheeks in recent days has implored players to carry over the drill work to game days. "It’s just a matter of making it work," Thomas said. "It’s just getting on the same page with everyone and everybody just being in rhythm out there and having each other’s back on defense. It just takes a little time. But the effort is always there."