KD & Russ Getting Shots Up At Shootaround
By Randy Renner
At this point (3-10, last place in the Western Conference) most Thunder fans are ready for any sort of encouraging words, even better an encouraging photo.
Here at InsideThunder.com we aim to please.
When reporters were allowed into the gym area of the INTEGRIS Thunder Development Center injured superstars Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook were out there on the floor putting up some shots.
Westbrook worked on free throws and some mid-range jumpers and KD was firing shots up from long range, he hit several of them too.
It's believed Westbrook is still a couple of weeks away from being able to fully participate in practice and Durant is probably three weeks away at this point.
But it is encouraging to see them out on the basketball court at practice and moving around better and putting up more shots than we've seen.
Shooting guard Andre Roberson is already back, he played the other night at Denver but his minutes are being limited.
"Feels great being back on the floor but playing limited minutes I'm just trying to get a feel for it, can't rush back into things," Roberson said. As far as those limited minutes are concerned, "I'm not sure how long they'll stay around, at least until I feel comfortable like I used to be."
Roberson admits he's not 100 percent, "but nobody in this league plays at 100 percent. But my foot feels great and I'm ready to go."
Roberson only played seven minutes in Denver and he may be up to 10-12 tonight against Brooklyn. Head coach Scott Brooks doesn't usually come over to talk with reporters after shootaround, preferring top wait until his pregame availability so we should find out more about Roberson's minutes and get a progress report on Perry Jones then. Jones is also expected back any day.
Perk Has More Words Of Wisdom
If there's one go to guy on the Thunder who you can always count on to give you some straight talk in any interview session it's got to be Kendrick Perkins and as usual Perk was interview gold when we chatted with him.
"When you got your top dogs out you almost gotta play perfect every possession so you can't have these five minute stretched where you just take time off and then teams go on them runs and you look up and you're down 13 points."
Perk was referring to the Thunder's two game road trip to the mountains and specifically the Utah game when the Thunder built a 17 point lead, then relaxed and all of a sudden it was gone. They played Denver pretty tough in the first half of that game then let down in the third quarter.
"You have every guy that plays have two possessions where have 'my faults' or 'my bads' that's too many possessions wasted throughout the game. With all the new guys in the lineup and your top dogs out, you can't afford that."
Perk can see the lapses out on the floor and he notices more subtle problems when he watches game tape whether it's a teammate or himself who needs to cleanup mistakes.
"You can't put it all on the coaching staff or Scotty, sometimes you gotta be accountable and sometimes it gotta come from within and gotta police ourselves."
With Brooklyn coming in on a five game losing streak and the Thunder coming in having lost four straight, someone's streak is going to end tonight and Perkins and his former Boston teammate and current Nets power forward Kevin Garnett, have already chatted.
"We talked a little noise last night on the phone, he was like 'we on one (losing streak) so they tryin to get a win and I said s--t I'm on one too, we tryin to get a win. So he's still my big homie but not right now though."
Thanks Perk, always appreciate you.
The Thunder and the Nets tipoff at 7 o'clock,if you can't make it down to The Peake tonight it'll be on Fox Sports Oklahoma and of course click back here for our full postgame coverage including interview sessions with Coach Brooks and players.