The Weekly Rumble
Where the Thunder was Good
- 3-point shooting
- The Thunder shot a splendid 41.3% from beyond the arc over the last two weeks, a mark good for fourth amongst NBA teams in that same span, behind only Portland, Sacramento, and Toronto. Three-point shooting might be OKC’s number one weakness on paper, and during a span in which Anthony Morrow and Alex Abrines played only 66 total minutes, a number like 41% is extremely encouraging.
- Defensive efficiency-
- OKC allowed a stingy 97 points per 100 possessions over the last 2 weeks, a number that would’ve been good for 2nd in the NBA last season. It’s preseason, so don’t put too much stock into this number, but it’s a step in the right direction from allowing Real Madrid to score 92 points in a half.
- Offensive Rebounding-
- In our last Weekly Rumble, we knocked the Thunder for their surprisingly poor offensive rebounding, however, they’ve bumped the number up from 9 per game to 11.5 per game. Their offensive rebounding rate of 26.3% over the last two weeks would’ve been good for 3rd in the NBA last season, but it’d still be a substantial drop off from the 31.1% last year’s Thunder team posted.
- Steven Adams-
- The big man played in just 2 of the 4 games, but in those 2 games he put up some ridiculous per-36 numbers: 27.6 points/14.9 rebounds/3.0 blocks/2.2 steals.
Where the Thunder was Bad
- A problem during the first week of preseason has perpetuated through the end of preseason. The number has dropped from 22 per game to 19.3 per game, but preseason or not, that number is way way too high. It’ll be critical for this Thunder team to limit the free points it gives its opponents.
- The Thunder have a team full of foulers. Check out these fouls per-36 minutes: Price - 6.4, Sabonis - 6.2, Ilyasova - 5.9, Lauvergne - 5.1, Singler - 4.9, Oladipo - 4.8. The big man depth OKC possesses should come in handy if foul trouble persists into the regular season.
- Free Throw shooting-
- I’m still concerned about the Thunder’s free throw shooting. They’ve shot just 72% over the last 2 weeks, and 73.2% overall in preseason. One of their biggest strengths is getting to the free throw line, so when they get there and don’t convert at a high rate, it could adversely affect the outcome of close games.
Player of the Weeks
What in the hell is going on with Kyle Singler?! Like, in a good way. He’s hit 7 more threes than any other Thunder player over the last two weeks, hitting 63.2% of his attempts. THIS (well, not to this extent) is the Kyle Singler Thunder fans thought they were getting when Presti traded for him. If he can sustain his superb 3-point shooting even at a 40%+ clip, it would help this Thunder team immensely.
What to Watch for
- With the regular season on the brink, there’s still some positional battles that haven’t quite been sorted out yet. Who will play between Abrines and Morrow? Or will they both play? Ersan Ilyasova or Joffrey Lauvergne? Does the Thunder figure out a way to keep Semaj Christon on this team? Remember, OKC is still at 16 guaranteed contracts; that number has to come down to 15 before the season begins. Has Mitch McGary started packing yet?
Things are trending...
Upwards. Steven Adams has looked even better than any of us could’ve imagined. If he continues to be a top 3 player on the court most nights, the Thunder will have a successful season.
The regular season is upon us. Finally.
10/26/16 - @ Philadelphia
10/28/16 - vs. Suns
10/30/16 - vs. Lakers