Perkins: I wasn't criticizing Coach Brooks
After Game 4 of the NBA Finals, the biggest sound bite coming out of the Oklahoma City Thunder locker room was from their starting center, Kendrick Perkins.
But, Perkins has now stated that the comments made, which discussed the rotation of players, did not come across as he intended and should not be taken as criticism of coach Scott Brooks.
“I'll roll with Coach Brooks all day, so it wasn't nothing directed at him,” Perkins said, according to The Daily Oklahoman. “At the end of the day, we've got a group of guys who are all capable of playing well and making plays. At the end of the day, Coach is trying to coach and win games.”
Perkins was asked about the rotation in Game 4 after the Thunder took a commanding 17-point lead in the first quarter. The center, never one to mince words, spoke candidly about the situation.
“I just don't understand why we start out the first quarter the way we did, with the lineup that we had, and all of a sudden we change and adjust to what they had going on,” Perkins said after Game 4. “So they won the last three quarters, and that's what happened.”
On Thursday, Perkins chalked the comments up to frustration.
The Thunder have lost three straight games in the NBA Finals despite being in situations where they could have won each game in the closing minutes, only to have Miami find a way to pull out the win.
Oklahoma City now has its backs up against the wall, and NBA history is not on its side. No team ever has come back from a 3-1 deficit to win the NBA Finals.
But if any team can get hot and overcome the odds, it is the Thunder. Oklahoma City has put together two winning streaks of three or more games during these playoffs. The Thunder swept the Dallas Mavericks 4-0 in the first round and came back from a 2-0 hole against the San Antonio Spurs and won four straight game to advance to the Finals.
On Thursday, Oklahoma City will get its chance to make history and prove that, as long as it plays its brand of basketball, it will have a shot to win no matter who is on the floor.