Royce Young on Russell Westbrook having triple-doubled against all 29 NBA opponents: “With 12 points, 13 rebounds and 13 assists against the Chicago Bulls on Saturday night, Russell Westbrook has only one team that he hasn’t recorded a triple-double against, and he probably won’t get to cross that one off. The Oklahoma City Thunder are now the only team Westbrook hasn’t recorded a triple-double against, after he notched his third of the season and 82nd of his career in a 101-69 win over the Bulls.”
Chris Matyszczyk (CBS News) on the Thunder team plane and the mid-flight scare early Saturday morning: “The Oklahoma City Thunder was flying from Minneapolis to Chicago when its chartered plane suffered serious damage. The team’s center, Steven Adams, was one of several players who tweeted pictures of the Boeing 757-200’s completely flattened nose. And he appealed to some well-known scientific experts to explain what happened.”
Brett Dawson discusses tomorrow’s deadline for Josh Huestis’ contract option: “Oklahoma City has a team option on the fourth year of Huestis’ rookie contract. The team has to decide by Tuesday if it wants to pick up that 2018-19 option or allow him to become an unrestricted free agent at the end of this season. There’s a case for either action.”
KC Johnson (Chicago Tribune) on the Thunder re-tooling to sustain success: “The offseason moves general manager Sam Presti and his staff made to land Paul George and Carmelo Anthony in separate trades to complement reigning MVP Russell Westbrook may look to some as a bold experiment, a haphazard attempt to stay relevant in the wake of Kevin Durant’s stunning 2016 departure via free agency. Instead, the moves line up neatly with Presti’s tenet to be positioned methodically to seize opportunity and have allowed the small-market Thunder to sustain success. In their 10th season in Oklahoma City after moving from Seattle, the Thunder have averaged 53.5 victories since their inaugural 23-59 campaign, advanced to the 2012 NBA Finals and, along with the Spurs and Rockets, are one of three teams to post a .500 or better record the last eight seasons.”
Erik Horne on Andre Roberson and emerging Thunder rotations: “Among lineups which have played 30 minutes or more, the Thunder’s starting five — Roberson included — is ninth in points allowed per 100 possessions and sixth in point differential (net rating) per 100 this season. But even if the numbers are strong in a small sample size, Roberson, who made the NBA All-Defensive second team for the first time last season, hasn’t looked quite right on offense or defense.”
Alysha Tsuji (USA Today) on the Westbrook family Halloween costumes: “Russell Westbrook’s wife Nina shared amazing photos of the Westbrook family’s Halloween costume. It’s extremely adorable. Nina and their baby boy dressed up as bees, while Russell is the beekeeper! Genius.”
Jenni Carlson on how Paul George’s mother’s stroke changed him forever: “His mom was having a stroke. “She was pronounced dead at one point,” George said. She was not only saved but also returned to full health — and no one is more grateful than her only son. For the past couple years, Paul George has lent his name and given his voice to efforts by the American Heart Association and the American Stroke Association. As they attempt to increase awareness about prevention and treatment on World Stroke Day, he is an example of how important it is to take quick action at the first sign of a stroke. George, after all, doesn’t know where he’d be without his mom and her example.”
Around the League: Oladipo hit a game-winner against the Spurs…. Draymond Green and Bradley Beal got into a fight during Friday night’s Wizards/Warriors game.… The Celtics were granted an $8.4 million disabled player exception for Gordon Hayward…. The Cavs lost to the Knicks and are officially struggling…. The Pistons beat the Warriors in Oakland last night.