Well, the Thunder blew another lead last night. We’ve seen it against Minnesota, Boston, Sacramento, Denver, and now San Antonio. Billy Donovan has spoke quite a bit about “stamina” over the last few weeks, as OKC has picked up this unfortunate trend. That wasn’t as applicable last night. A lack of adjustments came back to bite them down the stretch, as their defense couldn’t make the right changes to combat the Spurs’ audibles.
I’m going to break up today’s spotlight into two separate points, both important for Thunder fans to consider.
With 12 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter, Paul George missed a 29 foot three pointer. That was his first shot attempt of the entire fourth quarter. Not ideal. Occasionally, George will disappear for brief periods of time, and last night it happened early on in the fourth quarter. The all-star forward needs to find consistency just as the entire team does. They need his contributions in close games like this.
On a separate note, the Thunder pride themselves on their strong defense. Last night, the Spurs adjusted their normally slow paced offense into a quicker style of play during their comeback. This prevented OKC from getting comfortable in their half-court sets. I said it earlier, but making adjustments is a must on both sides of the ball. Last night they could’ve used some on the defensive end.
- Carmelo Anthony missed tying the game at 102 with 5 seconds left by half a shoe size. His toe barely touched the line, making his FG worth one less point. If only his shoe was slightly smaller.
Crazy sequence as OKC gets several looks. Melo sinks a shot from... 2? 3? We’re under review. pic.twitter.com/l13SvnjeW3— Up The Thunder (@UpTheThunder) November 18, 2017
- Steven Adams returned in San Antonio. He finished with 16 points and 7 rebounds.
- Carmelo Anthony led the scoring for OKC with 20 points.
Thunder now 1-7 in games that come within three points with four-or-fewer minutes to go.— Fred Katz (@FredKatz) November 18, 2017
- Russell Westbrook continued his enigmatic play. After one quarter, he had 10 points on 3-6 shooting to go along with 3 assists. The rest of the way, he shot 2-16 to go along with several critical defensive lapses.
- Blowing leads is not fun.
A Look Ahead
OKC travels to New Orleans on Monday to face off against the 8-8 Pelicans. New Orleans lost in Denver last night, but more importantly lost Anthony Davis to an apparent concussion. It looks like he’ll miss some time as he will enter the league’s concussion protocol program, but it’s something to keep an eye on prior to Monday’s game.