Jan 4, 2017; Charlotte, NC, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder center Steven Adams (12) walks down the court after being called for a foul during the second half against the Charlotte Hornets at the Spectrum Center. The Hornets won 123-112. Credit: Sam Sharpe-USA TODAY Sports
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“Enes Kanter will be hoping for retribution after a dismal performance in the Thunder’s last game against the Warriors, and will look to lead the second unit as he has done before. The big man’s player efficiency rating is now exactly 25.00, thanks to a 20-point average from his last five appearances.”
Enes Kanter better be looking for more than just retribution tonight. Without Steven Adams, the Thunder have .00001% chance of winning tonight. Adams was the x-factor of the WCF last season; without him the Thunder are devoid of the one matchup nightmare for Golden State. Let me be blunt. This game is going to suck. It’s going to be another reminder that Kevin Durant left, plus the Thunder are going to get blown out. Ugh.
“Harden and Durant stayed in contact after he visited OKC. Harden told Durant he didn’t work out well for Memphis. There was hope. The Grizzlies passed, taking Thabeet. The Thunder pounced, injecting Harden into a core that, years later, is now viewed as maybe the most stunning collection of young talent in NBA history, but also one of the league’s greatest non-title ‘What if’s.’”
Serious question. Why do I force myself to read these things? All it does is make me depressed. This one was different though. Durant was candid about Russell Westbrook and James Harden. He even mentioned that Harden could have been the best sixth man ever. He still thinks about it. That heals me. If the only guy who actively made the decision to leave OKC still thinks about it, I can. And dang does it hurt.
“Last season, the Thunder were a win away from a trip to The NBA Finals, and then they lost a former MVP in Kevin Durant. The Thunder made several roster and philosophical moves to make Westbrook the unquestioned hub. These Thunder should make the postseason, although as great as Westbrook has been throughout the season, during the playoffs the Thunder will likely need at least another consistent scorer to help carry the load.”
Ahhh let’s talk about something positive. Like the fact that Oklahoma City is almost guaranteed to make the playoffs this year. Being in No Man’s Land (6-8 seed) isn’t the best tactic in the NBA, but I think it was important for us fans to see some sort of success. Most important for this season is the future; I think we should be confident where the organization is heading.