Close Article Return to stream X
NBA

Bench Play Dooms Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Los Angeles Clippers

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Despite all the high praises the Oklahoma City Thunder bench has been receiving of of late, they struggled to get it going tonight in a 111-103 loss to the Los Angeles Clippers.

Backup center Steven Adams got his first start of the season as Kendrick Perkins sat out tonight’s matchup. Adams finished with seven points, four rebounds and one block in 20 minutes of play. He continued to show improvement, although his numbers don’t pop out at you. There was one play where he caught the ball, stopped on the dime and dropped a sweet one-handed push shots in the hoop.

It’s easy to see why everyone is calling for him to get the nod as the starter. Thunder head coach Scott Brooks seems to be the only one who still have some faith in Perkins at this point.

Jeremy Lamb was basically invisible out there, sputtering out with zero points on the board and 0-for-5 shooting. It’s been his first really unproductive game of the year, though, and I can’t say enough good things about what he’s done thus far otherwise. I think fans in Oklahoma are still excited about the play of their team’s reserves. It’s a marathon of a season and every game won’t always go the way you want.

Tough losses like tonight are important for these reserves; it serves as a reality check that’ll get them working even harder to be more consistent. All it seemed like the Thunder needed was one more player to step other than Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook.

Derek Fisher continued to struggled in what may be his last NBA season. He hasn’t been getting many minutes lately, but he also hasn’t been hitting his shots. He’s a player I’ve watched for a while now and I know that he can be a streaky shooter. Fisher will eventually find his mark and become a positive contributor on this team. He is an old vet out there trying to keep up with 20-something superstar athletes; it may take a little while longer from him to get his regular season legs up underneath him.

It’s evident that the Thunder won’t be relying on their bench to take them to the promised land, but every teams planning to be contenders in this league will need at least slight above average production from their reserves.

The starters’ jobs are to be the difference-makers in the game, but the bench holds it all together like glue. That said, Thunder fans have every right to remain highly optimistic about their chances to go deep in the playoffs regardless of the team’s bench play here in the early part of the season.

The Thunder’s bench will have to find some quick answers as they’re set to face off against the Golden State Warriors later tonight on TNT.

Brian Anderson is a NBA writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @MrAnderson035 “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.

Your Favorites
 
 
Close Article Return to stream X
NBA Videos

Kevin Durant Nails Game-Winning Shot For Oklahoma City Thunder

In a matter of 18 seconds, the Oklahoma City Thunder crushed the Orlando Magic's dreams on Wednesday night. Serge Ibaka came through with the clutch rejection of Victor Oladipo, and Kevin Durant subsequently crossed Tobias Harris over prior to nailing the game-winning jumper from downtown.

Comment 0 Comments
 
 
Close Article Return to stream X
NBA Videos

Karl-Anthony Towns Throws Down Slam On OKC

Minnesota Timberwolves big man Karl-Anthony Towns is having a monster campaign and is the clear-cut favorite for rookie of the year as we speak. This epic clip of Towns dunking on Oklahoma City Thunder PF Serge Ibaka is video proof of Towns' incredible size and spectacular athleticism.

Comment 0 Comments
 
 
Close Article Return to stream X
NBA Videos

Kristaps Porzingis Soars For Epic Put-Back Dunk

We all remember draft night and the vicious boos that Kristaps Porzingis heard from New York Knicks fans. Well, Porzingis has been nothing short of phenomenal thus far for New York, and is as polished as anyone could have hoped he would be at the young age of 20. Porzingis' epic put-back dunk against the Oklahoma City Thunder this evening proves how athletic and aware on the court he truly is.

Comment 0 Comments
 
 
Close Article Return to stream X
NBA Videos

Hornets Inexplicably Allow Durant Free Dunk

While I understand that Oklahoma City Thunder SF Kevin Durant is physically intimidating when driving the lane, the Charlotte Hornets should be ashamed of themselves for the defensive effort they put forth during this play. I mean, they didn't even try. The Hornets have made some solid strides this season, but boneheaded mental collapses like this will prevent them from continuing to build momentum.

Comment 0 Comments