Grading Thunder Players After Saturday’s Loss to Houston

Jeremiah Robinson-Earl #50 of the Oklahoma City Thunder (Photo by Ian Maule/Getty Images)
Jeremiah Robinson-Earl #50 of the Oklahoma City Thunder (Photo by Ian Maule/Getty Images) /
1 of 3

The Thunder were defeated easily by the Rockets in Houston on Saturday evening. The Rockets looked like a team much better than their 5-14 record would indicate. At the same time, the Thunder struggled through what some would call their worst performance of the season. Surely the fact that they were playing their third game in four nights (the previous two being overtime games) factored into the sluggish showing.

The first quarter resembled a pattern that Thunder fans have grown used to through the first 20 games of the season. The Thunder fell into a hole early and were down 14-4 when Mark Daigneault called a timeout at the 8:34 mark of the first quarter. However, they battled back and would have taken a lead into the second quarter if not for an Eric Gordon three-point basket at the buzzer that gave the Rockets a one-point lead.

The next three quarters were all Houston. The Rockets outscored the Thunder 42-22 during the second quarter and led by as many as 27 during the third quarter. The Thunder outscored the Rockets during garbage time in the fourth quarter to make the final score look more respectable, but Houston was clearly in control throughout the game.

Before Saturday, the Thunder and Rockets had nearly identical three-point shooting percentages on the season. You wouldn’t believe it by watching this game. The Rockets shot 18-36 beyond the arc while the Thunder could only manage to hit 23 percent of their shots from deep.

105. 149. 118. 169. Final

Coming up we’ll take a look at each Thunder starter’s performance during Saturday’s night’s game. We’ll provide a detailed breakdown along with an overall grade for each player.