OKC Thunder 30 for 30 round table: The book club

Chris Paul, OKC Thunder (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
Chris Paul, OKC Thunder (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /

The OKC Thunder30 for 30 arrives at question three as the T.I. writing team ponders reading material to entertain the players while on hiatus.

With the NBA in the beginning stages of the suspension, the OKC Thunder players are in their first week of self-quarantine.

Fans are getting to bear witness to players who aren’t used to being this inactive. Thunder fans have been treated to Tik Tok videos from Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Darius Bazley and yes even Chris Paul made a cameo appearance in the above duo’s dance. SGA also spent some time on social media in an impromptu fashion show of his best drip.

Suffice to say the players have much more time on their hands than they typically are used to. To help them out the T.I. team is here to suggest some books the team could read that will entertain them and hopefully motivate as well.

With that here is question three of the 30 for 30 series. Remember to add your thoughts to the comments section…

Q3: Recommend a good book for the players to help pass the quarantine.

Dustin McGowen:

The entire team should definitely read “Slobberknocker: My Life in Wrestling” by Jim Ross and Paul O’Brien. This chronicle from the legendary pro wrestling commentator is filled with examples of how the show must go on in the face of extreme adversity. Ross regales the reader with tales of his humble beginnings in Eastern Oklahoma and roller coaster ride in the sports entertainment game. Good ol’ JR had a tough hand dealt to him in life, but much like the OKC Thunder,  has come out of that turmoil as one of the best to ever practice his craft.

Matthew Hallett:

The book that I would recommend for the players to read is the power of positive thinking. They have achieved something amazing this season and they need to keep it going. This will hopefully not change thanks to the season break but getting a little more positivity and self-belief never goes astray.

Rylan Stiles:

I think the entire team should gather around a social distance acceptable circle, sit criss-cross applesauce and as a team read the little engine that could. They have to believe that if they do end up playing again this season, they can make a run in the postseason.

Shontelle Matano:

I recommend the OKC Thunder read the book Legacy by James Kerr – What the All Blacks can teach us about the business of life. It is an enchanting and inspiring read all about the New Zealand national rugby team – the All Blacks. Big Kiwi Steven Adams will know a bit about it.

It dives deep into the team with a 77.41 winning percentage since 1903. Why they are so successful, their history, culture and how they maintain high performance under pressure. There are so many amazing anecdotes and I’m sure the team will enjoy reading it, going away feeling empowered and enlightened.

Tamberlyn Richardson:

Chris Paul recently noted in his GQ 10 must-haves video he is constantly reading a book. Like CP3 I tend to have a book (or two, or three) on the go at any given time. In terms of sports or basketball-related books there are a few I’d recommend. The first is an autobiography “Pistol – The life of Pete Maravich” by Mark Kriegel.

A page-turner about Maravich’s short life and career and focuses on the father-son relationship of the enigmatic star.

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Another must-read is  “The Book of Basketball –  The NBA according to the Sport Guy”. It’s Bill Simmons opus and would be especially great reading for the youngsters on the OKC Thunder who aren’t fluent in the other eras of the game.

Simmons recently recorded a podcast series “The Book of Basketball 2.0” with extensive coverage of the next era since his book was initially published. There are entire chapters (podcasts) dedicated to the OKC Thunder glory era with a specific focus on Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, and James Harden.

Each of the podcasts on the Thunder is worth a listen including several dedicated to Harden and Durant. Simmons also chronicles the 2012 Spurs series and run to the finals as well as that heartbreaking 2016 season with particular emphasis on the WCF of 2016 and that fateful Game 6 (note: some of these latter segments are grouped into the Warriors and Stephen Curry segments.

The other sport-focused book (not basketball related) I’d suggest is Friday Night Lights: A Town, a Team, and a Dream by H.G. Bissinger.

Next. 30 x 30 round table: Donovan focus during suspension. dark

Question four on Thursday sticks on a similar train of thought of something the players can do while on hiatus. As always we’re interested in your thoughts on the above question and invite you to add them in the comments section. Wishing everyone a safe and healthy day.