Every NBA fan around the world knows that Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook are the Oklahoma City Thunder‘s most dynamic duo. What most people do not know, however, is that they have another pair of players making a lot of noise; those players are Reggie Jackson and Jeremy Lamb. They may never be as flashy or efficient as KD and Westbrook, but they are having a huge impact on the game coming off the bench.
Prior to the season, everyone was questioning the Thunder’s progress as a team. Many thought they had taken a few steps back after a quiet offseason accompanied by the loss of Kevin Martin. The Thunder knew it within themselves that they would be just fine. The early return of Westbrook sparked a fire under this team, and things have not even begun to cool off.
Influenced by their teammates’ will to be on the floor, Jackson and Lamb assumed their positions as role-players and managed to slowly improve with each victory. There is no better feeling than winning, and these players know they will have to be confident and consistent if they want their team to succeed.
When Durant or Westbrook leave the game, it is not as bad of a feeling this year. Last year, you did not know what you were going to get out of Martin on a nightly basis. When Jackson and/or Lamb steps in, Thunder fans feel comfortable. Their outstanding play has given the Thunder the security blanket they have been looking for since James Harden was traded.
Jackson’s and Lamb’s extremely impressive shooting have their bench with the third best field-goal percentage in the league. They also combine to average more than 21 points per game, landing the Thunder 12th overall in scoring with 33 points a night. Expect this secondary dynamic duo to steadily improve as the season continues. I will not be surprised if both of these guys end up being candidates for the Sixth Man of the Year Award.