By Randy Renner
Thunder center Kendrick Perkins says he and his teammates “gotta be ready,” for the San Antonio Spurs tonight because “they gotta lotta tricks up they sleeves.”
A lot of Thunder fans are certainly happy the Thunder picked up a much needed win in Game 3 but don’t count Perk as someone who is “happy,” cautiously optimistic maybe, but definitely not happy.
“We only won one home game, we still down 2-1, there’s no reason to be happy,” Perkins, the Thunder truth teller, pointed out and then added this little nugget.
“The happy team always lose, so you gotta make sure you come into this game and know that you still down and this is a must win. So you can’t come into this game happy or satisfied.”
Perkins has long been praised for the attitude he brings along with his defensive toughness. So you can bet Perk has been telling his teammates not read the stories in the paper praising them and how they’ve turned things around.
He’s been telling much the same things he told us after shootaround today, lock-in on the job at hand with laser-like focus.
“It’s all in your mind and it starts now. You have to be locked in all day, just think about plays during the game, right now. Think about what’s gonna happen, think about what they do and just be locked in.”
Perkins would love to see the same sort of intensity from his team tonight that he saw from them on Sunday.
“I thought our on the ball defense was great, starting with Russ, I thought he set the tone early and it’s gotta be the same tonight and you got to expect they gonna make some adjustments.”
The Thunder are expected to at least start the game doing much the same things as Sunday. Reggie Jackson starting at shooting guard and of course Serge Ibaka back at his power forward spot, though nothing official was said after shootaround about either player.
One thing for sure, Perk expects both teams to come with everything they’ve got for tonight’s game.
“It is gonna be a possession by possession game and goin down to the wire, that’s my opinion so we gotta make sure we not wastin’ any possessions and not turnin’ the ball over.”
And not being happy.