Category Archives: Oklahoma City Thunder

New Post at Hickory High on Kevin Durant’s 4th Quarter

Go check out how the Spurs tried to defend the scoring champ.

In this next clip, we see the Spurs change up their defense. They switch on the Westbrook screen, which leaves Tony Parker to guard Durant. Clearly a mismatch, the Spurs have to send some extra help. In the first play, we see some nice weakside action, as Kendrick Perkins sets a screen on the helper, Gary Neal, so he is unable to recover to his man. James Harden misses a wide open three. In the second play, Kawhi Leonard times his double team perfectly, but misses the steal and Durant hits the shot.

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New Posts at Hickory High on Thunder-Mavericks and Pacers-Magic

Video breakdowns of the Thunder-Mavericks and Pacers-Magic Game 1s are up at Hickory-High.com, go check it out!

Indiana Pacers vs Orlando Magic

Oklahoma City Thunder vs Dallas Mavericks

 

 

First Round Series Previews at Hickory High

There’s a ton of great NBA Playoff info at Hickory High.  Video and statistical previews abound.  You’ll get more great tidbits there than anywhere else.  Go check it out:

East

Chicago Bulls vs Philadelphia 76ers

Miami Heat vs New York Knicks

Indiana Pacers vs Orlando Magic

Atlanta Hawks vs Boston Celtics

West

San Antonio Spurs vs Utah Jazz

Oklahoma City Thunder vs Dallas Mavericks

Los Angeles Lakers vs Denver Nuggets

Memphis Grizzlies vs Los Angeles Clippers

New Post at Hickory-High.com Breaking Down the Thunder Pick and Roll

How do Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, and James Harden get so open despite the lack of inside presence on offense?  Why can’t defenses stop them?  Head over to Hickory High and find out!  (h/t to Chris at Smart Football)

Because Kendrick Perkins, Serge Ibaka, and Nick Collison don’t threaten a defense, Oklahoma City has to get creative when their initial option is contained.  The first thing Oklahoma City does is use the screener to set a second off-ball screen instead of the rolling to the hoop.  Normally, a simple screen for Kevin Durant could be handled with relative ease.  But because the defense is overplaying the ball handler, there is nobody to help Durant’s man when he gets screened.  The video below shows the space this second screen creates for Durant.

New Post on All Star Snub James Harden at Hickory-High.com

Go check it out

One way Harden improved his overall numbers was to focus on his strengths.  He was excellent as a pick-and-roll ball handler last year, ranking 9th in the NBA in points per possession.  This year, he’s been involved in more pick-and-roll possessions per game, and he’s become even better at it.  Harden is at his best when attacking the hoop, and the pick-and-roll puts him in position to do just that.  Harden has become an excellent finisher; he’s shooting 70% at the rim, which is better than the average center.  Watching him turn the corner and slash through traffic makes those comparisons to Manu Ginobili seem very appropriate.