With the lockout there was plenty of free time for the players. They considered themselves unemployed since they couldn’t technically do their jobs. So, they went pro-bono in some ways. Some players flew across the country and played in multiple charity events. Some went back to school and worked toward their degrees.
Kevin Durant: Enough said with the video.[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DBsLxqH-0bQ]
Durant was a highlight reel across the country. He even went up to Oklahoma State University and surprised the Sigma Nu fraternity by playing some flag football game. Durant had agreed to play in a charity flag football game in Ohio with Lebron James. KD went to the Philippines for an All-Star charity game. KD also brought Lebron, Melo and CP3 back to OKC for a great charity event. KD had an INSANE triple double. 42 points, 26 rebounds and 11 assists to lead his team to a 176-171 victory in overtime
James Harden: Harden was called by Lebron James as the best street player in the NBA. Can this be converted into one of the best players in the league? Only time will tell. However, Harden was busy improving on his game. He dropped 51 in a Drew League game this summer.[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TLLybPG6284]
Not to mention, he went with KD over to the Philippines to compete in a charity all star game. He also was in the Oklahoma City charity game. Many expect Harden to start. Will be an interesting season as Harden continues to move into more of a relied scoring position.
Russell Westbrook: Russell Westbrook did play in some Drew League games, and also appeared in the Oklahoma City Charity event. Westbrook was also seen on the campus of UCLA many times, as he is continuing his degree, which is very respectful and a great use of the extra time. Also, Westbrook has been spotted putting up the time in the gym improving his game. Learning to be in more control and shooting the long ball better. However, in the OKC Charity game, he didn’t do so well (0-5 from 3pt range).
Serge Ibaka: Oh, you know, a normal summer for Serge. He was nationalized by Spain, allowing him to play in 2011 Eurobasket tournament. He helped Spain to win the FIBA Eurobasket tournament in outstanding fashion. He only played 17.2 minutes behind Pau Gasol, but shot 56% from the field, while averaging 7.1 points per game. Not to mention he plays for Real Madrid’s Euro team. Serge averaged just 5.2 points per game. Doesn’t seem like a lot, He played very sparingly in the five games. Ibaka will need to become a solid inside scoring presence for the Thunder
Kendrick Perkins: While the off season for Perkins was a bit tumultuous than most players. He was arrested on a disorderly conduct over the summer by causing a commotion at a club. He did do one thing that most didnt; he shed weight. Perkins was seen in a charity pick up game, looking a lot more slim. He said his knee was a lot better. Remember, big Perk played on basically a 55% healthy knee. He was barely able to jump, which caused him at times to be really inept on the offensive end.
Nick Collison: Collison had a pretty quiet season. He did get with his trainer before the team voluntary workouts and help improve his offensive game. He felt at times he passed up good shots in favor of his own teammates. Collison is scheduled to play in a charity game in Seattle. I have recently found out Collison is finally selling his house in Seattle.
Thabo Sefolosha: Thabo’s offseason was more quiet than the rest. He went over to Switzerland to play basketball for Fenerbahce Ulker. He averaged 25 minutes of floor time, while averaging 12.5 points per game. He shot over 50% from the field, including 50% from three point range. Early November he dropped 19 points in a Euroleague game, a career high in the Euroleague for Sefolosha.
Byron Mullens: While the Thunder big man was off in prisons playing pick up ball games with inmates, he did jet off to Europe to try and play in the Euroleague. Mullens was with Panionios B.C. for only a month before saying he wanted to come back and join his Thunder teammates as they were holding voluntary workouts across the country.
The rest of the Thunder players were relatively quiet. Mainly flying across the country to see one another. Restricted free agent, Daequan Cook, has spent a lot of time in his Oklahoma City home. He loves it here and is hopeful that he can be re-signed.We invite you to follow Thunder Digest on Twitter and like Thunder Digest on Facebook. Don't forget to subsribe on Youtube! Our Podcast is on iTunes and on Stitcher. We also have a Thunder Digest Instagram account if you love fun Thunder photography!