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Setting the Bar: Thabo Sefolosha

Setting the Bar: Thabo Sefolosha

We took a look at a list of goals for the entire Thunder team a couple weeks ago. But let’s get detailed. Let’s get specific. I’m going to dig in and hit on some individual goals for a few players that would define a successful season. So what meters for success should we set for Thabo Sefolosha?

Thabo Sefolosha Thunder

Second Team All-Defense. This is probably unrealistic. In the current landscape of the NBA, most postseason accolades are won over a couple of seasons by gaining reputation. And nothing is more true than in the All-Defense teams. A lot of those guys get by on reputation alone instead of actually being elite defenders. So if Thabo can spend a whole season catching people’s attention with his lockdown skills, maybe he can grab a little traction. Plays like this go a long way in building a reputation, so hopefully we have a season full of them.

Develop his “shot”. Like Bruce Bowen’s deadly corner three, Thabo needs his shot. It could be from the corner, it could be from the top of the key, it could be from the wing for two. He just needs a spot where when he fires it up, we know it’s going down.

Shoot above 35 percent from three. This is similar to the previous one, but he needs to be consistent from three from everywhere. Thabo isn’t a big offensive threat, but he’s a valuable piece to have on the floor. Not just for his defense but for his leadership, passing abilities and knack for spacing the floor. He’s not going to score a bunch of points but if he can hit open threes, he’ll become a very important piece to the puzzle.

Move his PER from the 11-12 range to around 13-14. Thabo’s usage should go up this year because he’ll play an entire season in an important role. But he needs more efficient numbers and needs more production on the glass and assist-wise. He’s too good a passer to only average 1.7 a game. And at 6’7, he should average more like five rebounds a game instead of 3.7.

Update his website. If you go to ThaboSefolosha.com, the color scheme is still that of the Bulls. At least the picture, news section and scoreboard are current to what team he’s on. But give me some Thunder blue. Oh and ditch that autoplaying music thing. That’s just about the most freaking annoying thing in the world. I’ll just hit play if I want to hear some crappy song by Jamie Foxx.

Basically keep up what he did with the Thunder last year. Before he got to OKC, he averaged 4.5 ppg with Chicago in 17.1 minutes per game. But with the Thunder, those numbers jumped to 8.5 ppg in 31.1 minutes a game. His percentages went down a little, but everything – literally everything – else went up. If he sustains the production he finished the last 23 games of the season with, coupled with his defense, he’ll have had an extremely productive year.

Picture 1

Ideal stats: 9.0 ppg, 2.5 apg, 4.0 rpg, 2.0 spg, 45 percent from the field, 35 percent from three. Thabo is a defensive specialist and he’s knows it. He doesn’t try to be anything more and that’s key for him this year. His job on this team is to defend the other team’s best scorer, wreak havoc in help defense, tip passes and move the ball offensively. He can’t try and compete with James Harden in terms of offensive production because that’s not what makes him valuable. But at the same time, he needs to be productive while he’s on he floor.