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TAG: Thabo Sefolosha

Smack / Jun 3, 2012 / 5:43 am

Kevin Durant Saves Oklahoma City

Kevin Durant

The whole “clutch gene” thing has taken on a life of its own in the past year or two. It’s become an impossible standard to live up to. But for once, even with great player after great player succumbing to its weight and expectations, someone stepped up and met the challenge. Through the Western Conference Finals’ first three games, Kevin Durant had 13 fourth quarter points. Last night in OKC’s series-tying 109-103 win, he dropped 18 and made every single big basket. Durant (36 points) wasn’t just hitting jumpers either; In fact, most of his buckets in the fourth quarter were tear drops or midrange pull-ups, the hardest shots to master in the game. He made pretty much all of them, and by the time it was over, he had officially stamped his blueprint on a series that suddenly looks very interesting. Read More »

NBA, Smack / Jun 1, 2012 / 12:19 am

Thundering Heard Finally On The Plains; Thabo Sefolosha Takes Over

Serge Ibaka

Manu Ginobili just kept rubbing his temples, not even looking ahead at the court. Tony Parker and Tim Duncan looked stonefaced, like they were at an opera. In the background, slightly out of focus, the blue T-shirts had coalesced into one dancing, delirious mob. The scene was the fourth quarter and if you haven’t already picked up the hint, nearly the entire quarter was garbage time because of how big the Oklahoma City lead had grown and the Spurs’ stars had to watch it. Read More »

Fantasy Doctor, NBA / Apr 10, 2012 / 11:00 am

Daily Fantasy Basketball Diagnosis: 4.10

Goran Dragic

Beast of the Night: Goran Dragic finished with 22 points, two rebounds, seven assists, three steals and four three-pointers. He shot 57 percent (8-14) from the floor and 67 percent (2-3) from the free-throw line, and had two turnovers. Since becoming a starter exactly a month ago, Dragic has averaged 18.5 points, 3.5 rebounds, 8.6 assists, 2.0 steals and 2.1 threes per game, while shooting 52 percent from the field and 82 percent from the free-throw line. Those are top five numbers. Kyle Lowry‘s return shouldn’t damage Dragic’s fantasy value too much the rest of the way. Read More »

Smack / Apr 10, 2012 / 12:32 am

Russell Westbrook Shows Out Again; Spurs Lay A Late Easter Egg

Russell Westbrook

Oklahoma City should show some love to Russell Westbrook for getting them back into first place in the West. The Thunder rolled on Milwaukee by 20 behind their superstar point guard. Westbrook destroyed the new look Buck backcourt, going for 26 easy points and seven rebounds in only 26 minutes. Kevin Durant added 19 and Thabo Sefolosha had a reverse dunk that even Kobe would’ve enjoyed … Who caught the Mike Dunleavy and Serge Ibaka tussle? Ibaka reached out to grab him by the shoulder, and Jr. busted out the most epic karate chop we’ve ever seen in an NBA game … The Thunder are back in first because Devin Harris got revenge, and Paul Millsap got freaky in the fourth. Read More »

NBA / Dec 23, 2011 / 11:00 am

The NBA’s Top 5 Up-And-Coming Backcourts

Tyreke Evans

In the last decade, the NBA has transformed from being a big man’s league into a guard’s league. Although frontcourts have always, and will always be the foundation of a winning team, recently franchises have found it much more difficult to build an elite frontline than putting together a competitive 1-2 punch. Ultimately, putting together a dominant frontcourt is what separates the good teams from the great ones, because in today’s game every team has talented guards. Frankly, each team has a backcourt that can outplay its opponent on any given night, which is why it is so difficult to pick five particular tandems as the best up-and-comers in the League. Read More »

NBA, Video Games / Nov 17, 2011 / 11:00 am

The Miami Heat & LeBron James: Kings Of The Video Game World

NBA 2K12

Is this the year for Miami’s redemption? The year LeBron turns it all around and rids himself of those evil demons? We may never know for sure. But at least in the video game world, 2011-12 is all about South Beach and LeBron James. Without the real NBA, I simulated a season to see what would happen. Of course, gamers know with stuff like this, there are always oddities (How did Antawn Jamison make an All-NBA Team? Or Dirk an All-Defensive Team?). But they seem to get the majority of stuff right. If we’re relying on NBA 2K12, then this year would’ve been all LeBron’s. Read More »

Fantasy Doctor, NBA / Oct 13, 2011 / 11:00 am

NBA Fantasy Team Analysis: The Oklahoma City Thunder

Kevin Durant & Russell Westbrook

The Oklahoma City Thunder are not like a box of chocolates. You know they’ve got four fantasy studs that can feasibly be drafted in succession in the first four rounds of standard-sized drafts. Truth be told, no one else on this roster really matters. It will be interesting to monitor how the team’s mercurial point guard adjusts to having a more prominent mate in the backcourt. Read More »

NBA / May 26, 2011 / 11:00 am

Why The Bulls Should Re-Sign Jamal Crawford

Jamal Crawford

The most common criticism that people have had against the Bulls this season has been their lack of a true scorer outside of Derrick Rose. Never was that more evident than in the last five minutes of regulation and overtime of Game 4, when Rose essentially went one-on-one with a much bigger LeBron James because nobody else on his team could create any shots without his help. The most glaring weakness is at the two guard spot, where the Bulls currently have a flawed three-man rotation there. Read More »

NBA / May 17, 2011 / 12:30 pm

The Da Vinci Code: Measuring NBA Playoff Value By Position

Derrick Rose

When C.J. Watson replaces Derrick Rose, Chicago fans collectively hold their breath. While their star briefly recharges the batteries, they can only hope that he does not shed his offensive leash. In a structured offense, an overconfident backup can singlehandedly ruin the dynamic. Think Jamal Crawford when he’s ice cold. This, in a nutshell, is C.J. Watson. But the emotional rollercoaster that is Watson’s game does not provide a concrete answer to the following question: How much do the Bulls actually miss Rose when Watson is on the floor? More generally, how great a difference is there between a starter and a backup in the playoffs? Let’s find out. Read More »

NBA / Apr 15, 2011 / 12:00 pm

James Harden Is The Oklahoma City Thunder’s Championship X-Factor

James Harden

This much we know. Behind Kevin Durant acting as the “one” in the Oklahoma City Thunder’s one-two punch is Russell Westbrook. But to make a run in the playoffs, the other, other guy that could punctuate OKC’s ascent to elite heights is James Harden; the lightening bolt that could roll the Thunder deep into the playoffs.

He’s smart. He’s savvy. He’s hardworking. He’s unnoticed. A No. 3 overall draft pick (he went a pick ahead of Sacramento Kings guard Tyreke Evans, by the way), the shooter/slasher is averaging 15.8 points, 2.8 rebounds and 2.4 assists since the All-Star break. Read More »