You may or may not be aware of how the Chinese calendar works. Last year was the year of the dragon which you probably know of because Kevin Durant took it upon himself to name his best design yet for his signature shoes accordingly. Well I’ve got a proposition for the Chinese; as we enter the year of the snake, why not just name it the year of the Durant? Well, let’s take a look at his case for such a bold proclamation.
Back in our 3 on 3 we discussed what we’d need to see from Kevin Durant to take Oklahoma City back to the Finals. Expectations were high, we wanted to see him evolve his game in a Lebron-esque fashion. And just what have we been gifted with so far you might ask. How’s 51-43-90 cutting it for you? While averaging 28 points, 8 rebounds, 4 assists, and laying down a +30 efficiency. That number would make Nick Collison blush folks. The last time a player averaged a 50-40-90 season it was Dirk Nowitzki who’s team won 67 games. Take that with a grain of salt considering they lost in the first round of the playoffs, but Baron Davis is not an all star anymore or in the Western Conference. Regardless that efficient production absolutely bodes well for the entire team. We also witnessed Kevin Durant’s first triple-double, however as we all know there have been plenty of times he was close but was pulled at the start of the 4th quarter. I think we got this one right over here at Thunder Obsessed *insert proverbial pat on the back here*. In any event watch and/or record any time Kevin Durant is on your television, he’s putting together quite the season.
Underneath all of Durant’s magnificence is the season Russell is putting together. Who is quietly (of course) averaging 8.7 assists, 21 points per game, and 5 rebounds. Let me remind you someone who averages nearly a double double in points and assists isn’t a point guard by any measure, but i digress.It really seems like Honey Badger is just beginning to find his shooting stroke as well, I can’t wait to see the kind of games he has when he’s fully immersed in his rhythm. Roy Hibbert could tell you first hand about the season Russ is having defensively, his ball hawking is second to none. At times, Russell and Thabo absolutely strangle the opposing back court. This has led to Oklahoma City having the best offense in the NBA and at the top record wise. Thanks to two special players having two special seasons, we really can’t ask for much more.
Another item we hit on in the 3 on 3 was the ability to integrate Kevin Martin. Let me start out by saying I think Kevin Martin is a long-term fit for OKC. He’s committed to this organization and I would love to see the same level of commitment come from the Thunder front office this off season. Martin is averaging 16 points per game on 46 percent shooting and 46 percent from three. Not only is he beyond deadly from 3 but the Russ, Martin, Thabo, KD, and Ibaka line up is Oklahoma City’s most effective. A Fast, Versatile, and athletic line up, he gives Scott Brooks a lot of line up options. Everything I had hoped to happen at this point of the season has come to pass and exceeded my highest expectations. Even Serge Ibaka is making a strong case that he’s an all star caliber power forward. Averaging nearly 15 points per game, 8.5 rebounds, and of course 3 blocks per game. His offensive arsenal has expanded to anywhere inside 20 feet, his jump shot is smooth and reliable, and he can stretch the floor with the best of them shooting 56 percent this season. Yes, Serge, you were definitely worth your contract no doubt about it.
Could this be Oklahoma City’s best season to date? That’s not out of the question at all, nor is it what i expected. But it is remarkable, the confidence and aggression this team plays with. My advice would to be enjoy it Thunder Fans, let’s bring the Loud to Loud City every night. This isn’t the season to get complacent, we just might be seeing their strongest push yet, why not push with them?