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Friday Bolts – 3.18.11

Friday Bolts – 3.18.11

Michael Falgoust of USA Today on Perk’s impact: “The smile across Serge Ibaka’s face can’t be controlled. Not because the power forward is finally starting for the Oklahoma City Thunder, but because he’s talking about playing alongside newly acquired center Kendrick Perkins. “I just need to play off him. He’s just a good, good defensive player,” Ibaka says. “When he (holds) down his guy, it’s easy for me to come block every shot.”

Andy Kamenetzky of Land O’Lakers looking at Perk’s trash talk: “Also, am I the only person disappointed by Perk’s dependence on the most played out of cliches as trash talk? Can’t you even vary the parlance and call Pau “weak?” A “marshmallow?” “Baby giraffe,” as Lakers Late Night refers to those occasional moments when Pau does appear contact-averse? Must we run with the most dead obvious? Should Perk decide to expand his targets, I’m guessing Kobe Bryant is a ball hog obsessed with scoring and imitating Michael Jordan’s mannerisms, Derek Fisher is old, Lamar Odom has no right hand, and Ron Artest is pretty out there.”

Why did Juwan Howard blast KD on that screen? Dan Devine of BDL has reasons: “Arms that long and you expect me to believe you’re an according-to-Hoyle human? Nuh-uh. Not happening, daemon. Your brand of lies will find no purchase here, foul familiar; I’ll banish thee back to the depths if it’s the last thing I do.”

Derrick Rose and Russell Westbrook, the same but different.

I don’t understand this, but everyone says it. Berry Tramel think OKC has to pay its dues before it wins: “Depends on the bracket. I like OKC in the first round. But Thunder-Spurs in the second round? Tough, but San Antone is not playing as well as it was earlier, and the Thunder is playing better. OKC could beat the Spurs. The Lakers would be tougher. [A championship is] a longshot. The Thunder has not ripened. You’ve got to pay your dues. If the Thunder wins a playoff series this year, that’s a great step. I think eventually OKC will win the NBA Finals, but there’s nothing easy about it.

Statistically, James Harden isn’t a bad Sixth Man of the Year candidate.

Another story on how Perk was sad when he got traded from ESPN Boston: “Like most of us, Kendrick Perkins never saw it coming. Three  weeks ago, he was a Boston Celtic, going through the morning  shootaround at the Pepsi Center in Denver. There was a game that night  against the Nuggets, although the injured Perkins was going to be a  spectator, having injured his knee two nights earlier at Golden State. Perkins, of  course, never made it back to the Pepsi Center for the game that night.  After the shootaround, his agent, Bob Myers, called and told him of the  possibility of a deal. Perkins had no clue.”

Sekou Smith of NBA.com: “For all the flashy, highlight-reel dunks and plays made by the Miami Heat this season, the backbone of their title quest is the fact that they are one of the league’s most relentless defensive teams when they are at their very best. Seeing the Oklahoma City Thunder stifle the Heat with their defense last night at American Airlines Arena confirmed what we already knew: this Thunder team has truly graduated to the next level.”