Category - Thunder News

Here’s why Carmelo Anthony skipped out

Carmelo Anthony skipped out on the media after Oklahoma City’s 116-103 loss to the Charlotte Hornets on Monday night. It’s rare for a player to do and to happen after a loss can signal up warning signs from the locker room. However, Anthony set the record straight on Monday at practice.

“I was facetiming with my son,” Anthony said.

Currently, Anthony’s estranged wife La La and his son Kiyan, both are still residing in New York City. So, it’s understandable that Anthony would want to take time when he got a chance, and at a decent hour as New York City is an hour ahead of Oklahoma City, to talk to his son. Especially with it being a school night.

“I skipped out on you guys yesterday, I apologize,” Anthony said.



La La has said Anthony is an incredible dad, saying “they have an incredible bond, and Melo is an incredible dad. They’re always on FaceTime or on the phone planning their next trip.”

Anthony will get a chance to spend time with his son Saturday. Oklahoma City will be in New York to play the Knicks on Saturday night and don’t play again until Monday. They’ll get Sunday off for a back-to-back played on Friday and Saturday. It’s not impossible to think Anthony will stay in New York City on Saturday night to spend time with his family.

In his first season with the Oklahoma City Thunder, Anthony is averaging 18.0 points and 6.4 rebounds in 32 minutes per game.

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Paul George expects Pacer fans to boo

The Oklahoma City Thunder and Paul George are returning to Indiana for the annual trip to the Hoosier State. The big different this time is Paul George returning to Banker’s Life Fieldhouse for the first time as an opponent.

On Tuesday at practice, George said he expected boos when asked what his expectations are for returning to Indiana for the first time since being traded.

“Boos,” George said. “I honestly wouldn’t expect it to be any other way.”

George was traded on June 30 to the Oklahoma City Thunder in exchange for Victor Oladipo and Domantas Sabonis. The Thunder won the first meeting in Oklahoma City handedly but on the road it may be a different atmosphere for the Thunder and George.

“The Pacers fans outweigh the Paul George fans,” George said.



For George, he’s looking forward to being the villain in his former home. George told the Pacers front office he wasn’t re-signing with the organization in mid-June. It only took two weeks for the Pacers to trade George.

“It’s for whatever reason I’ll be booed but I’m going to embrace it,” George said. “I’m gonna thrive on that and it’ll give me energy to play better.”

Oklahoma City and Indiana will tip-off at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 13 at Banker’s Lifefield house. The game will be televised live on ESPN.

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Paul George fishes with kids

Paul George brought out a group of kid’s from inner city Oklahoma to teach them his love of fishing. In partnership with Oklahoma Wildlife Conservation and the Paul George Foundation, George took a group of kids fishing to show them why he loves it so much. George also brought along the man who taught him to fish at the age of five his father, Paul George Sr.

“My dad, he did the same thing when I was a kid, and when I had Paul I went and did the same thing.” George Sr. said.

George has come to Oklahoma with an openness that is somewhat remarkable since he isn’t contracted to stay in Oklahoma for anytime past this season, yet he hasn’t let that stop him from embracing the community in OKC as Michael Knopp who is Exec. Director of OKC Boathouse said.

“That’s what we do every day here, is try to engage and provide opportunities to youth,” Kopp said. “This is just a new way, and its I think really special he (George) came right into Oklahoma City ready to serve and to give back and inspire kids. It’s completely in line with what we’re doing, try and get people outside.”

George in the process of showing the kids how to fish also bridged a gap for the Oklahoma Wildlife Conservation to connect with the inner city kids of Oklahoma City.

“We’re so blessed in Oklahoma to have such a rich eco-diversity, great outdoor experiences, and for us to be able to reach these inner city kids in particular as we did today is something that is really tough for us to do at Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation. So we are just thrilled that Paul George reached out to us.” said Director OKC Department of Wildlife Conservation JD Strong.

George hopes to have hepled these inner city kids in taking there first step into something they might want to accomplish in the future.

“This is my element right here,” George said. “This age is where you can really explore and really figure out what you want to do and what motivates you and drives you what do you like to do? If fishing is what they want to do, then this was the first step for them. Practice, work on it, and ultimately they will get the happiness they want.”

George may have also tried to throw some bait out into the see of Oklahoma City Thunder fans by saying in a press confrence at this event.

“Oklahoma’s home for me, so it’s fun to start this journey,” George said.

Let’s  hope the Thunder organization can land the big fish they are after.

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Carmelo Anthony out vs. Mavericks

Carmelo Anthony will sit out tonight’s game against the Dallas Mavericks due to a sore back according to  the Thunder.

It’s the first missed game for Anthony with the Thunder.

Anthony is averaging 20.3 points and 5.8 rebounds in 12 games for the Thunder this season.

Per Thunder head coach Billy’s Donovan, Steven Adams will miss his second straight game. Dakari Johnson is expected to get the start again in the place of Adams.

The Anthony news came almost an hour after media availability, leaving no one to ask who was starting in pace of Anthony.

It’s unknown when Anthony hurt his back. It could have been at practice yesterday or it could be just a day rest with an excuse.

It is expected Patrick Patterson to step in and start for Anthony.

The Thunder and The Mavericks tip-off at 6 p.m. The Thunder look to win their second straight game against the NBA’s worst record.

 

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NBA gives Westbrook an assist and a triple-double

On Thursday morning, the NBA gave Russell Westbrook an assist, figuratively and literally, to give him his fourth triple-double of the season.

On Tuesday, Oct. 31, the scorekeeper in the game at Milwaukee missed an obvious lob to Steven Adams and didn’t credit Westbrook with the assist. The NBA made it right on Thursday. Westbrook finished with 12 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists.

Here’s said video of the missed assist:

It’s Westbrook’s 81st career triple-double and 46th triple-double in his last 89 games. If you eliminate every triple-double for Westbrook before last season, he would still be ranked eighth all-time on these two seasons alone.

The NBA doesn’t only review plays when a milestone like a triple-double is on the table. They often review plays. There was a random play in the playoffs in 2012 where the NBA accredited Westbrook with an assist after dishing off to Thabo Sefolosha. The assist had no barring on whether or not a triple-double happened. The NBA does its best to fix its mistakes.

On the year, Westbrook is averaging 19.6 points, 11.7 assists and 9.9 rebounds per game in seven contests. Across the board, his numbers are at career highs, sans free throws. The reigning MVP might not average 30 points this season but his impact is being felt even more than last season with the additions of Paul George and Carmelo Anthony.

Dean Blevins of KWTV is on the prowl saying the Thunder told him they’re reviewing a rebound. That’s highly unlikely.

Westbrook will be going for his third straight triple-double against Boston on Friday night at Chesapeake Energy Arena. The tip-off is at 8:30 p.m., not 7 p.m. It’ll be the late game on ESPN. So, drink some coffee and make sure you can keep awake for this one. It should be exciting.

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NBA reviewing to see if Westbrook had triple-Double

On Tuesday night Russell Westbrook finished with 12 points 10 rebounds and nine assists against the Milwaukee Bucks. So we thought.

It was revealed on Nov. 1, by Brett Dawson of newsok.com/The Oklahoman that the NBA will be reviewing if Westbrook indeed gets robbed of an extra assist which would, in fact, give him his fourth triple-double of the season.

According to Brett Dawson of the Oklahoman “A source on Wednesday told The Oklahoman that the league was aware of the apparent assist that should have been credited to Westbrook. The play was due to be reviewed, but there was no immediate timetable for a ruling.’’

But that’s not all it has been revealed by Sports Director at KWTV Channel 9 in Oklahoma Dean Blevins that the association is also review if Westbrook, in fact, got ten rebounds “The Thunder tell me that the NBA is now reviewing if one of his (Westbrook) 10 rebounds should count.” Blevins says

https://twitter.com/keith_absher/status/925900858474336258

This is getting very interesting to see if the NBA gives Westbrook a tenth assist which would give him his fourth triple-double or plot twist take away a rebound so that it doesn’t matter if Westbrook got a tenth assist or not.

We will see, but as Brett Dawson said earlier, there is no immediate timetable for a ruling.

Also, with Dean’s history, you can take what he says with a grain of salt. Who knows, even a broken clock is right and such.

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The Mike Tyson of basketball?

On Tuesday night Milwaukee Bucks coach Jason Kidd compared Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook to boxing legend Mike Tyson.

“He is the [Mike] Tyson of basketball,” Kidd said before his team’s game against the Thunder per Nick Friedell of ESPN.com. “When the jump ball [goes up], he is coming as Tyson did [in getting] off the stool. When the bell rings, he’s coming for you. Whenever he’s on the floor, he plays at one speed, and that’s fast and hard.”

The comparison alone is fascinating and fun to think about, when you think about how Westbrook plays the game, you can compare it to the way a world class boxer would go about breaking down an opponent to get the knockout.

Westbrook likes to find his teammates early in games. Either by driving to the basket and dumping the ball under the basket to Steven Adams for a slam dunk or an easy layup or Westbrook will drive to the basket and kick the ball out to teammates out on the wings for either a long two or a three-point catch and shoot opportunity.

If you watch a world-class boxer work, they like to go to the body in the earlier rounds to soften up their opponents body and legs which in return makes the opponent start to drop their hands so that in the middle to later rounds the world-class boxer can go for the knockout.

Westbrook goes at the oppositions “Body” early by assisting his teammates earlier in games so that the opponents “Body & Legs” their interior defense will “Soften” up which allows Westbrook in the third and fourth quarters “Middle to later rounds” to go for the knockout. As we saw last season with Westbrook becoming the clutches player in the NBA, In clutch time Westbrook led the NBA in fourth-quarter scoring In the 2016/17 season, averaging 10 points per game in the final period of games.

Part of the reason Russell Westbrook became so fantastic in the later parts of games is that he softened his opponents up with his version of a body shot. Assist early make his opponents respect his teammates so that they cant just focus their defense on him. Then go for his version of a knockout punch late in the fourth quarter. In 2016/17 Westbrook played like Tyson aggressive and ruthless. So maybe Kidd was right. Last season. This season Westbrook isn’t playing like Tyson. He doesn’t have to it’s not all on Westbrook anymore.

Westbrook has become controlled aggression, and that might just be more lethal than ruthless aggression something Mike Tyson was never able to achieve, and we all saw how that played out. We are in the middle of an evolution of historic proportion. This evolution can take Westbrook from a great player who did some landmark things and won an MVP or two to a legendary historical basketball player that you tell your grandchildren about.

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2k rating changes for Thunder players

A lot of people play NBA 2k18. It’s a fun series and the developers are awesome at keeping it close to real life as possible. There are a few flaws but for the most part, they do a fantastic job of trying to keep  everything up to date.

Today, 2k released some rating changes throughout the NBA. There were some Thunder changes as well. Seven players had their rating rise or be lowered.

Around the Association,  some of the biggest changes went to former Thunder player Victor Oladipo. Previously, he was a 79 and jumped up to an 84. Mike James went from a 69 to a 74. Then, on the flip side, Kyle Lowry, Dirk Nowitzki, Wilson Chandler, Markelle Fultz, and Lance Stephenson, who all saw their overall ratings fall by three points.

Tobias Harris of the Pistons, Kyle Kuzma of the Lakers and Evan Fournier all had four point jumps.

Before we get into the Thunder ones, there are some questionable ones from around the league:

  • Jeremy Lamb is now a 78 overall???
  • JR Smith is a 73?!?!
  • How in God’s green earth is JJ Barea a 77 overall
  • Reggie Jackson is 80 overall
  • Domantas Sabonis gets a four-point jump is now 76 overall
  • Giannis Antetokounmpo is bumped up to a 94.
  • Rudy Gobert lost two points and is now an 86.
  • Kelly Oubre of the Wizards gets a one-point bump to 75 overall. Must be his fighting skills.

Now the Thunder ratings:

  • Paul George: 90 OVR (-1)
  • Carmelo Anthony: 85 OVR (+1)
  • Steven Adams: 83 OVR (+1)
  • Andre Roberson: 75 OVR (-1)
  • Patrick Patterson: 74 OVR (-1)
  • Jerami Grant: 74 OVR (+1)
  • Alex Abrines: 73 OVR (-1)

First: Patterson and Abrines super under rated here. Abrines being a 73 is asinine. Patterson is more of a 77 guy, in my opnion.

Second: Melo only an 85 overall? I am bewildered.

Third: Adams deserves more of a bump up. He’s earned it.

If you have 2k18, add me thunder_digest on PS4 and we’ll play.

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Thunder plane struck in air by bird, everyone safe

In the wee hours of the morning, images started flying across social media about the Thunder’s private charter plane. It struck something on their way to their second night of a back-to-back in Chicago. It left a huge indention in the nose of the plane.

Huestis was the first one to hit and then Steven Adams and others did as well

The good news through everything is it appears the Thunder landed safely with no damage to anyone aboard.

Through a quick google search of “dent” “nose” “plane,” it appears they hit a bird.

Other planes have hit birds and here’s another twitter user showing damage after one or two birds struck a plane.

It could be birds striking the plane or you know, it could be UFOs, right Daily Mail?

Oklahoma City lost to the Minnesota Timberwolves 119-116 on Saturday night before this all happened. We’re glad everyone on the plane is safe and in Chicago. We can make jokes like they hit Howard the Duck or something but it’s really just glad everyone is safe.

”You never take anything for granted, just be thankful and blessed they we were able to land the plane and everything was OK,” Russell Westbrook said. ”Seeing stuff like that just shows you how you need to cherish life and understand the important things in life and embrace every moment.”

Delta Airlines spokeswoman Elizabeth Wolf said maintenance was evaluating the situation and that the damage was likely caused by a collision with a bird. She said the Boeing 757-200 landed safely without incident at Chicago’s Midway International Airport.

”Must’ve been a pretty big bird , a Pterodactyl maybe,” Nick Collison said.

”It’s one of those moments you bow your head and thank the man above,” Westbrook said.

Oklahoma City beat the Chicago Bulls 101-69 in Chicago following the plane incident. Luckily no one was hurt.

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Oklahoma City Thunder waive three, signs two

The Oklahoma City Thunder were busy on the transaction wire.

Oklahoma City has waived guards Bryce Alford and Markel Brown and forward Rashawn Thomas, it was announced today by Executive Vice President and General Manager Sam Presti.

Then, they signed center Yannis Morin and forward Chris Wright, Per team policy, terms of the deals were not disclosed.

Morin and Write are expected to be waived before the season starts.

None of the waived players were surprising. They were all expected to be waived and signed by the Oklahoma City Blue.

Morin (6-10, 210) played five games (one start) with the Thunder in the 2017 Orlando Pro Summer League and averaged 2.2 points and 4.0 rebounds in 13.5 minutes per game. He spent the 2016-17 season with Le Havre in France, where he appeared in 37 games (28 starts) and averaged 6.8 points, 7.4 rebounds, 1.84 blocks and 1.00 steal in 24.5 minutes per game.

Wright (6-8, 226) was a member of the Oklahoma City Blue during the 2016-17 season. He appeared in 20 games (four starts) and averaged 9.9 points, 4.2 rebounds, 1.4 assists and 1.35 steals in 21.9 minutes per game.

Oklahoma City went 3-1 in the preseason and they will begin their regular season on Oct. 19 against the New York Knicks.

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