With a few questions lingering around the Thunder organization and fans, questioning why the Thunder weren’t playing well, those remarks and questions were all answered this week. A four game win streak that included wins in Los Angeles beating a talented and deep Clipper team, at home to play the “revived” Lakers, and in the one the toughest environments to play in beating the Knicks.
Being that it’s only the regular season, you can’t take too much out of Oklahoma City’s recent success. But, you can pick apart the little details that will make this team unstoppable come playoff time.
The Thunder’s bench has been absolutely brilliant as of late. Scott Brooks has had a minor change to rotation, as Hasheem Thabeet has not been playing as much as of late, with zero minutes against the Knicks. Also, Derek Fisher has virtually became Oklahoma City’s seventh man, backing up Westbrook. A big thanks to Oklahoma City bench success has been Reggie Jackson. He looks as if he’s a seventh year veteran on the floor. Directing, playing with a whole lots of confidence, and being the player Presti saw in him. Jackson hit timely three’s in the Knicks game to help the Thunder hold off the Knicks.
Another big key as of late has been the production of Serge Ibaka. Minus the stupid play on Griffin late in Los Angeles, Ibaka has been playing really well. He went for 12 and nine against the Knicks, and had 16 points against Blake Griffin and the Clippers.
Finally, most of this credit has to go to Russell Westbrook. We’ve heard the Kobe Bryant comparison that ESPN.com did, and it looks as if that jump started him on this streak. Westbrook seems “guardable” beating his guy to the rim every possession. He put up 37 points and 10 rebounds against the Lakers, 29 against the Clippers, and a solid 21 points against New York.
Now, here comes the second tough stretch for Oklahoma City. Today against Boston at home, in San Antonio (big one) on Monday, and a tough Jazz team at home on Wednesday. If Miami streak can come to end, the NBA needs to then take a look at how well the guys in the blue and yellow has been playing. Look out!