Tag Archives: Oklahoma City Thunder

Sports Blog Movement NBA Preview: Northwest Division

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1. Oklahoma City Thunder (63-19)

Kevin-Durant-SI-CoverKey Additions: Steven Adams (Draft), Ryan Gomes (Out of the league)

Key Losses: Ronnie Brewer, Kevin Martin, DeAndre Liggins, Daniel Orton

The Thunder didn’t make many moves this off-season. Then again, they didn’t really need to. Kevin Durant and Russel Westbrook will lead this team to a great regular season record– anything under 60 wins should be viewed as a disappointment. Their biggest question will be the shooting guard position. Thabo Sefolosha is a great perimeter defender, but he’s more of a situational player than a full-time starter. The Thunder will need second year player Jeremy Lamb to blossom into the player they think he can be.

A player to watch here is Steven Adams. The rookie has been very impressive in the preseason and could end up unseating Kendrick Perkins at the starting center position. Overall, the Thunder are the only team that has a legitimate chance to beat the Heat in an NBA finals series. That is, provided they can get there. Continue reading

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NBA Playoff Preview & Predictions

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I know I’m not the first person to say it, but this year’s NBA playoffs will be extremely entertaining. As you can see from my predictions above, I have the Miami Heat winning back-to-back championships. The competition level has increased a lot since last year but I don’t think any team has reached the Heat’s level.

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Rolling Thunder

Last night the Oklahoma City Thunder beat the Denver Nuggets in an overtime 124 to 118. It was an amazing game that I’m glad I got the chance to take a look at. I didn’t have the opportunity to catch the whole game because of my homework and writing, but what I did watch was borderline amazing.

I caught the game in the third quarter with about seven or eight minutes to go. Throughout these minutes, I saw why the Thunder may or may not go to the NBA Finals this summer. They showed me both ends of the spectrum last night; when watching I thought for sure that they were going to blow that game. The Nuggets had proceeded to clamp down on defense and diminish a double digit lead. Andre Miller and Aaron Afflalo combined for 48 points and Miller had an especially excellent third quarter. They had come back to take the lead, and then the Thunder seized control once again.

It seemed like with Harden going only 2-12 last night that Durant and Westbrook had no where else to go with the ball. Ibaka was having a monster game in terms of defense, but they can’t rely on him for consistent points. It was all in their hands. What you would wait on too see is how they would deliver in the clutch moments of the game. We can see from the win and the final results that they obviously performed well.

In the fourth quarter I thought that the Thunder would lose the game. The Nuggets had taken a 111-109 point lead. Aaron Afflalo was dropping all types of shots in the fourth quarter and was looking to close the game out. After a missed free throw, there was a bit of a suspenseful feel in the air for me. I wondered what was going to be drawn up to get Durant or Westbrook a shot.

Normally, they would go to a PnR with their dynamic duo late in the game. The Nuggets had played that perfectly for the last minute and a half though. What they did was when Durant slips the screen, which he tends to do because it springs him open quickly on the 3 point line for an open look, they placed Al Harrington on him. With his superior strength Harrington as able to push Durant all the way behind Westbrook instead of letting him catch the ball on a spot that he was comfortable in.

Chris Mullin had stated this many times in the game before. Durant was catching the ball at spots that were comfortable for him to go to work at. Either at the top of the arch or somewhere between the wing and the elbow would be a suitable spot for him. Harrington denied him this position and that meant no shot for the Thunder. This created some bad looks for Westbrook; some of which he was able to make and some that he wasn’t. I mean, he did have a 40 point game. So some of these looks had to fall. On a night where these guys aren’t the hottest thing next to the Sun, this could be detrimental.

We can’t fault Westbrook for taking shots in these situations either, because he has no other option but to shoot the ball. Sure, he does take ill-advised shots from time to time. But last night, this was not the case. Westbrook thrived so you have to give credit where credit is due.

The look that was drawn up to tie the game up was a SLOB play with Harden inbounding the ball. Durant had caught a screen from Ibaka at the top of the arch and proceeded to make the catch. After setting the screen, Ibaka slashed to the basket to give Durant a pressure release if the defense flowed to him. All he would have to do is make the pass to Ibaka and it was an easy dunk. The play was executed beautifully and Durant had an open lane to dunk the ball.

The Thunder went on to win the game, but this showed me how dangerous of a team they are. Not only to the league, but to themselves. I still have them going to the Finals for now, but any potential slip up could be dangerous for this team. They showed me that if Harden is not on, they will struggle to score the ball consistently. Westbrook and Durant aren’t going to go for 91 every night. This was a performance for the ages. The last duo to score 40/40 was Jordan and Pippen. Before that it was KeKe Vanderwhege and Alex English with the Nuggets. Before them George Gervin and Mike Mitchell managed to do this. In each instance the game went into triple overtime according to ESPN and Elias Sports Bureau. Not to mention that Serge Ibaka also had a triple double with blocks for the first time in Franchise history. They are the only triple threat to go for 90 points, 10 rebounds, and 10 blocks in league history. That’s saying something.

That’s pretty great company to be in for these two young superstars. I don’t know how legitimate of a title contender you thought this Thunder was before, but now you have to keep your eye on them. The only question is how will they play after they see we’re watching.

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Black Out Thursday!

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These are the black towels “Defend you Honor” on the seats as we speak for tonights game!

Tonight at Power Balance Pavilion the Sacramento Kings (9-16) host the best team in NBA, the OKC Thunder (20-5).

Tonight for those that tune in to TNT at 7:30pm PT, you are going to see hands down why the Sacramento Kings fans are one if not the best fans not only in the NBA but in all of sports.

As I say that I truly understand that there is a lot of teams that have very faithful fans, but this Kings team the last three years has won 17, 25 and last year 24 games.

Folks that is terrible, there is NO way any other team in the NBA would even attempt to do what the Kings organization is doing tonight, it would look silly!

BLACK OUT THURSDAY!

The Kings are giving out black towels and a lot of people are going to be wearing black that are going to the game. The Kings players themselves are going to be wearing their new this year black road jerseys for the game.

The city of Sacramento is in the mists of pulling off the unthinkable and that is a small market city saving their team, folks it has never happened!

TNT even knows how the scene is going to be, TNT has Chris Webber doing the play by play tonight court side for TNT. It’s going to be a no brainer but CWEBB is going to get one of the biggest standing ovations he has seen since the Kings retired his #4 jersey a few years back.

Past Kings players have been involved in this effort of fighting for the city and their old team, its big, these past players had their best careers and they say hands down their best time in the NBA was when they played for the Kings.

Tonight could not be accomplished in any other arena in the NBA, you cannot tell people to come out and show the country that they support their team no matter what!

What my city is going to do tonight is show the NBA world that Sacramento and the Kings are like the Lakers and Los Angeles or the Knicks and the city of New York.

Do you really think Atlanta, Minnesota, Clippers of the past, New jersey, Houston, the list goes on of city’s that could not get this to happen, what is going to happen tonight at PBP formerly the great Arco Arena!

NOPE, NEVER in a million years.

These city’s like most only want to go to games when their team is good and going to make the playoffs.
Not Sacramento and Kings fans, we relish the chance to show our pride in our sports team and show people and the NBA that the Kings not in Sacramento would be a serious blow to the league, trust me the NBA knows this, it’s not like the Grizzlies leaving Vancouver.

I understand a lot of you are not Kings fans and could care less, but I strongly recommend you to tune into TNT tonight at 10:30 pm ET and watch the Kings fans and their team that we love in action verse the young and powerful OKC Thunder.

Today Kings players are even fired up on Twitter because they know what it’s going to be like tonight, and if case you missed it we have not won over 25 games in three years!

I strongly feel……..no…….. I GUARANTEE THAT THE KINGS WILL WIN TONIGHT!

The Kings players are going to play out of their mind tonight with the crowd and the refs are going to favor the Kings no doubt.

Folks, NBA fans enjoy tonight’s game; it’s going to be a treat for anyone to watch.

Yes I will be there!

Till next time, Bobby Charts!

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