You know, I'm almost glad that the Oklahoma Sooners were playing their sweet 16 NCAA tournament game at the same time the Thunder were taking on the Raptors. Why? Because it means that a lot of Thunder fans didn't have to put themselves through the misery of watching this uninspiring performance on the road. The Thunder came out flat, and finished flat, as Chris Bosh and the rest of the Raptors put together their first three game winning streak since the all-star break. This marks the 2nd consectutive game that the Thunder took the floor and were just not competitive at all. The way this team has played during the second half of the season, its just hard to watch games liket his and not get upset. Serioulsy, whats wrong?
Well for starters, Nick Collison was our leading scorer tonight, with 21 points, and while it was a terrific game for Nick, he just shouldn't be leading this team in scoring, especially coming off the bench. It may surprise Thunder fans who have become so used to seeing Durant as the teams leading scorer, but KD had a really quite terrible night shooting the ball, just 4-13, but still managed to score 18 points. Green and Krstic added 11 points, and Westbrook had 10. Overall, the team shot 41% to the Raps over 50%.
But Collison leading the way scoring, and the overall shooting percentage deficit wasn't the biggest problem tonight, it was the Raptors dominance on the boards. They pulled in nearly 20 more rebounds than the Thunder. The Thunder have stayed in and competed in ballgames this season by out rebounding opponents most of the time, and for a young team that is struggling to shoot the ball, like they did tonight, they would have had to dominate on the boards to have a shot at winning. So combine the bad shooting, with the lack of being able out rebound Toronto, and you have pretty bad combination if you are a Thunder fan.
CB4 and the Matrix, that's Chris Bosh and Shawn Marion, for those of you who are nickname impaired, just destroyed the Thunder all night long. These two combined to score 41 points and grab 24 rebounds. Oh and I forgot to mention they also combined for 5 blocks and 8 assists. Insanity for sure. You can see why I'm always trying to find a way to get CB4 into a Thunder uniform. One can dream can't he? Yes, yes he can.
Anyway, with the Celtics coming on Sunday, and the Spurs early next week, both on the road, its not going to get any easier, and if the Thunder can't quickly turn things around against a couple of the better teams in the NBA, they will return home to the Ford Center with no momentum, and likely no confidence. Its important for these guys to play better basketball, win or lose, over these next two games.
|Final - 3.27.2009||1||2||3||4||Total|
|Oklahoma City Thunder||18||22||25||31||96|