Archive - May 2012

Lakers-Thunder Schedule

Game 1 Mon May 14 Los Angeles at Oklahoma City 8:30 p.m. TNT
Game 2 Wed May 16 Los Angeles at Oklahoma City 8:30 p.m. ESPN
Game 3 Fri May 18 Oklahoma City at Los Angeles 9:30 p.m. TNT
Game 4 Sat May 19 Oklahoma City at Los Angeles 9:30 p.m. ESPN
Game 5 Mon May 21 Los Angeles at Oklahoma City TBD TNT
Game 6 Wed May 23 Oklahoma City at Los Angeles TBD ESPN
Game 7 Sun May 27 Los Angeles at Oklahoma City TBD TNT
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Thunder Announcer Posts Bail

NewsOK.com has reported that JimMiller posted $30,000 bail Friday, an Oklahoma County jail official said.

The Thunder public address announcer who was arrested on complaints of lewd acts with a child in Oklahoma County is also under investigation in Pontotoc County, a Harrah police spokesman said on Friday.

James Allan Miller, 41, a Harrah High School teacher and tennis coach who has moonlighted for the Thunder, was arrested Thursday as he attended a meeting at Putnam City High School.

Miller posted $30,000 bail Friday, an Oklahoma County jail official said.

A probable cause affidavit filed Thursday in Oklahoma County District Court states Miller is accused of performing a lewd act while watching pornography in front of a boy. The district attorney had not filed charges as of 5 p.m. Friday.

Harrah police received the case as a referral from the state Department of Human Services three weeks ago, police spokesman Phil Stewart said.

Stewart said there is a parallel investigation in Pontotoc County. He did not have details on that investigation.
In the Oklahoma County case, two women also reported Miller performed lewd acts in front of them while looking at pornography and the behavior progressed to sexual abuse, the affidavit states.

Curt Knox, who coaches girls’ basketball at Harrah High School, said that he was “shocked” by the allegations.
School officials placed Miller on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation, Stewart said.

“At no point in time did we ever uncover anything that pointed to students being involved in any way,” he said.

Miller’s was the voice the Thunder audience heard during home games. The team suspended him from his duties this week.

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First Round, Game 4: Thunder at Mavericks

THUNDER LEAD SERIES 3-0.

 AT

Where: American Airlines Center
When
: 6:30 p.m. 
TV
: TNT (245 DirecTV, 31 Cox, 108 AT&T U-Verse, 138 Dish)
Online StreamHere.
RadioWWLS Sports Animal 98.1 FM/640AM/97.1 Tulsa
View from the enemy: The Smoking Cuban.

Projected Lineups:

Thunder Mavericks
PG Russell Westbrook Jason Kidd
SG Thabo Sefolosha Delonte West
SF Kevin Durant Shawn Marion
PF Serge Ibaka Dirk Nowitzki
C Kendrick Perkins Brendon Haywood
6th Man James Harden Jason Terry

 

Last time: OKC asserted themselves as they won 95-79 to take a commanding 3-0 run.

This game is INTENSE. The Mavericks are back against the wall, trailing 3-0 in the series. No team in the history of the NBA has ever come back to win a series once down 3-0.  The Thunder are sitting in a pretty solid spot. The Thunder are trying to sweep a team in the playoffs for the first time since 1995-1996. That year, they went to the NBA Finals.  If OKC would be able to pull off the sweep, it would only be the second time in franchise history.

Kevin Durant exploded for 31 points on 15 shots in Game 3, and it helped Oklahoma City to the blow out win, knows Dallas isn’t going to roll over.

“We know we have to be prepared and focused and locked in,” Durant said. “We’ve got a good opportunity. … We haven’t (done anything). That’s what we have to think.”

Just because as of 1:30 pm there are over 800 tickets left on stubhub for tonight’s game, that the Mavericks are just going to roll over.  Since 2005 when the NBA playoffs expanded to the Best-of-7, Teams that were 0-3 going into Game 4 only won 10 of 31 games. Only once did a team force it to a seventh game.  (2003 Dallas vs. Portland).

Keys to the game

Bench Scoring
I’m not saying OKC needs to win this matchup. However, the pattern over the series it that Oklahoma City needs to be near, or equal to the Mavericks bench production. With OKC’s third scorer coming off the bench, Oklahoma City relies heavily on their bench production.

Offensive boards
First two games, the Mavericks were able to grab some offensive rebounds, and put them in for extra points. However, in Game 3, the Thunder really limited them on grabbing those. Result? Oklahoma City led by 26 points at one point in the game.

Play your game
Being up 3-0 can really cause a lot of teams to play lightly, knowing they have a few mistakes in their pocket. Oklahoma City needs to assert its self by winning this game. Anything else, can give this Mavs team confidence. No one thought Boston was going to win in 2005, but they stunned the Yankees by coming back from 3-0. I could also reference some hockey when that’s happeneed. So, it CAN happen.

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Thunder Squeak by Mavs Again, Lead Series 2-0

This game showed why this is a budding rivalry. From Dirk’s elbows in the first quarter, to how the Mavericks fought back from yet another deficit against the Thunder. However, unlike last season, where the Mavericks fought back, tonight they did not. Kevin Durant hit two free throws with 50.4 seconds left, and James Harden hit the next four free throws to seal a 102-99 win. The Thunder victory has put the defending world champions on their heels as they head back to Dallas for Game 3 on Thursday.

“They [OKC] did what they had to do, they held serve.” Coach Rick Carlisle said. “Now we have to go home and hold serve too.”

It was Russell Westbrook he led Oklahoma City through the fire tonight. With Durant struggling from the floor, Oklahoma City turned to Westbrook to fight through the tough parts.

After a very intense first quarter, which resulted in double technical fouls being called on Kendrick Perkins and Dirk Nowitzki. Oklahoma City’s second unit came on and really pushed the tempo, and the lead. Oklahoma City was tied 24-24 when Westbrook and Durant checked out. When they came back in the second quarter, the reserves had given the Thunder a double-digit lead at 36-26.

Russell Westbrook led the charge, pushing the lead to 46-30 with 5:40 left in the second quarter.  The Mavericks called a time out, trying to handicap any momentum that the Thunder had at that point.

They had it alright, the ‘Peake was rockin’ and it was loud.

Dirk checked in and there came the Mavericks. It wouldn’t be a Mavs-Thunder matchup without Oklahoma City blowing a double-digit lead.

The Mavericks cut the lead to 50-47 with 2:12 left to go in the half, but the Thunder reasserted themselves, pushing the lead back to 10 points with 48 seconds to go in the half. The Thunder would lead 57-40 at the half.

The Third quarter was almost a complete 180 degree from the first two quarters. First two quarters, the officials allowed the teams to really be physical, and let a lot go. However, the second half would not see that.  Both teams would combine to shoot 23 free throws in the third quarter alone.

With the Thunder getting into foul trouble, really benefited the Mavericks. Dallas continued to try and penetrate, while the Thunder froze up with the Dallas zone defense. In all honestly, the Thunder looked like they were trying to play street ball for most of the second half.

Both teams traded the leads before Westbrook was able to give the Thunder the 79-77 lead at the end of the third quarter.

The Fourth quarter was very intense, and Nick Collison fouled out with nine minutes to play in the game. He left to a standing ovation. With Durant’s shot not falling, Derek Fisher came up big in the fourth quarter, along with Westbrook, Oklahoma City grabbed a 92-88 lead off a Fisher three from the corner. The Three was really the first set play, ball movement points in the second half.

Oklahoma City was able to score six of the final eight points of the game, allowing Oklahoma City to escape with the three-point victory. The win gives the Thunder the 2-0 series lead. The last time the Thunder led a series 2-0, they went on to win it (2011 1st round against Denver). Oklahoma City hasn’t lost a series when up 2-0 since the 1994 NBA Playoffs when, as the Seattle SuperSonics, they fell to the #8 seed Denver Nuggets.

Post Game Grades

Limit Dirk: C
Yeah, he had 31 points, but he wasn’t as involved in the second half as he was the first half. He had 20 in the first half, and 11 in the second. He also missed a chance at giving the Mavericks the lead with under 30 seconds to go.

Serge Ibaka: C
Ibaka might not have scored 22 points, but he was still very involved in this game. He finished with the second highest +/- with +14 tonight.

Get to the line: A+
Oklahoma City, the #1 free throw shooting team in the regular season, looked just like that tonight. They shot 39 free throws. What’s even more wild about it, is that they hit 37 of them! That’s nine extra points on the board, because OKC made their free throws.

Thunder Thoughts

  • Really, I’m going to lead off with Derek Fisher. It was hands down his best game in the Thunder uniform. Fisher was playing like it was 2002. If he can keep this up, Oklahoma City’s bench will be very very dangerous.
  • The threes were not falling, for either team. Both teams combine for 10-for-39 from deep.
  • Durant had another bad shooting night. He was 5-of-17 from the floor. However, Durant did much more than just letting his bad shooting night get to him. He finished with a double-double tonight. 26 points, 10 rebounds.
  • It’s just really amazing on the progression of Russell Westbrook. This guy has come so far since last season. A lot of people were questioning him at the beginning of the season. However, it was very obvious at this point that the lack of training camp effected him, and others (See Serge Ibaka). He’s really come into his own. I don’t think anyone on the Mavericks can stop him.
  • The Mavericks pulled down 12 offensive rebounds, well below the Thunder season average. However, they seemed to be key offensive rebounds. Also seemed that the Mavs really capitalized on every single one of them.
  • Um, Oklahoma City had just 18 points in the paint. Dallas had 40. The Thunder’s low number really can be contributed to their frequency at the free throw line.
  • Kendrick Perkins really responded offensively for Oklahoma City. He had 13 points tonight. 7 of them were in the first quarter, but they were very important, kept OKC in a streaky first quarter.
  • Some people tweeted that Dirk is a villain. I’m going to disagree. Has he been a lot different than we’ve ever seen him? Definitely. I don’t think Dirk is a dirty player.  I do think Perkins and Ibaka have really gotten into his head.
  • I’ve already heard some Mavericks fans complaining about the rate of the Thunder getting to the lane. I just would like to point out that OKC committed 28 personal fouls, to the Maverick’s 26. Just sayin’
  • Coach Brooks is really sticking to his guns and not playing Mohammed. I think he would have fouled everyone out, and played only guards before he played Mohammed, no clue why.
  • Lastly, it’s safe to say this is a rivalry. There is a lot of hate here, from both sides.

Next Up: Thursday at Dallas for Game 3. Two nights between games, so rest up. Watch some basketball.

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