I needed a few hours to let my go of my anger and frustration before writing a piece on what is going on in Oklahoma City.
My emotions post-game were just as bad as most Thunder fans: Worried, frustrated, dismayed, and uptight. Are the Rockets going to comeback from a 3-0 hole and make history? Is Kevin Martin that bad? Is Perk any help? Can the Thunder get one stop after scoring? Should the Thunder fire Scott Brooks?
You know the deal.
But, then reality sets in. The Thunder are up 3-2 in the series. The Rockets still have to win at home, and then go back to Oklahoma City and win another one. No team in NBA history has ever came back from a 3-0 deficit.
But, what makes Thunder fans so worried and in panic mode is…
Oklahoma City’s lack of scoring without Westbrook
Just so we get this straight: Kevin Durant is only human. After all, he is having an outstanding series. Last night, Durant put up 36 points to go along with seven rebounds and seven assists. It’s the other guys who have to step up. Durant gets double teamed nearly every time he gets a touch. And when Kevin Martin goes 1-10, Sefolosha goes 3-8, Jackson goes 7-15, and Fisher goes 2-6, you’re not going to win. It’s just that simple.
Scott Brooks’ coaching decisions
I was going on a rant on twitter when the Thunder went into their “Hack-a-Asik” stage about how dumb it was. Yes, I get it that Asik was a 56% free-throw shooter in the regular season. But last night, before the Thunder started the “Hack-a-Asik”, he was 5-7. Not only that, but the Thunder kept scoring and the crowd was getting into the game. Oklahoma City cut the lead to six with four minutes to go, and at that point, as a coach, you just have to have confidence in your teams defense. But instead Asik was fouled two more times, and the lead was back to nine. The fouls on Asik changed the momentum. And it for sure changed the outcome of the game.
Getting stops defensively
It seemed as if after every Thunder basket, the Rockets came back and responded. Half of that goes to James Harden for being absolutely unguardable last night but the other half goes to Oklahoma City’s lack of focus on the defensive end. It’s a simple method in which if you can’t get stops, you don’t deserve to win.
Needless to say, the Thunder just need one more win and then they can forgot about Patrick Beverley and Francisco Garcia and move on.