Brooks: "No Changes Yet," To Thunder Starting Lineup
By Randy Renner
Thunder superstar Kevin Durant isn't quite ready to return to the Thunder starting lineup.
"No changes yet," is exactly how Thunder head coach Scott Brooks put it after Monday's practice, but Durant continues to increase his workload in practices and workouts.
"He still has to reach all the bench marks we have in place, but he's progressing well, he went through the entire practice today and we'll see how he feels day-by-day but he's definitely moving in that direction."
That direction being of course back to the starting lineup. In practice hearing Anthony Morrow tell it at least, KD is already back.
"Me being on the blue team (the second unit) with KD comin back, he told me don't take it easy on him. But hey I can't do that anyway so it's good just to have that competition back," Morrow said.
The Thunder shooting guard said now that Durant and Russell Westbrook are both back to practicing normally one area has primarily been the focus of those workouts.
"Mainly just the chemistry, just moving the ball and knowing where guys wanna be and where they wanna get their shots at and the pace that we've been playin at now is on another level so we gotta keep that up and keep pushing ourselves in terms of the pace."
"We've been without a lot of our players so there's obviously a transition period," Brooks added, "in order to blend everybody together and our guys understand that."
Thunder forwards Mitch McGary and Grant Jerrett will are not flying to New Orleans with the team today for tomorrow night's game with the Pelicans. Instead they will take the court again at the Cox Center for the Oklahoma City Blue, the Thunder's D-League team.
"It's good for Mitch and Grant to go down there and get some conditioning in, they both need it," Brooks pointed out, "and they're both going to continue to utilize it."
Jerrett actually got to play Friday against the Knicks and McGary played for the Blue Sunday afternoon against Austin.
Both players showed rust and conditioning problems which is to be expected missing so much time with foot and ankle injuries.
After Tuesday night's game in New Orleans the Thunder will fly back and practice in at the INTEGRIS Health Thunder Development Center Wednesday before flying on to Philadelphia to continue their road trip which will also take them to Detroit.
Check back tonight and monitor our "feed page" I'll be at the Blue game tweeting out updates on McGary and Jerrett.