Thunder Notebook: Monday, January 14, 2019
Andre Roberson Update
For those patiently waiting on Andre Roberson’s triumphant return (all of us), there was some fairly disappointing news out of today’s practice session:
Full transcript of Donovan’s comments:
“He’s still doing his conditioning work… but again, it’s going to be a process that, uh, he’s nowhere near playing so it’s not like I have any idea of when he’s coming back. He’s worked hard. He’s doing all he needs to do… but he’s still in the rehab process.”Billy Donovan
Roberson suffered a season-ending ruptured patellar tendon on January 27 of last season, making it nearly a full calendar year since he last took the court. He suffered a setback in his rehabilitation on November 30 and was scheduled for reevaluation six weeks from that date — a date that came and went last week. With today’s update, it’s safe to assume his absence will extend far beyond what was originally anticipated.
Though Donovan went on to say he expects Roberson to return this season, the Thunder are more than halfway through the 2018-19 campaign at this point. Roberson could return and bolster one of the league’s best defenses as the playoffs draw near. However, it’s perhaps safer to assume this will be a lost season for OKC’s top defender.
Here’s to hoping I’m wrong.
In the wake of Roberson’s latest update, one silver lining is the recent play of Terrance Ferguson. The 20-year-old guard has been a revelation as of late, adding efficient three-point shooting to an already established ability on the defensive end. Here is his three-point percentage broken down by month:
October (6 GP): 7.7%
November (9 GP): 33.3%
December (14 GP): 36.7%
January (6 GP): 57.7%
All told, Ferguson’s three-point percentage is a healthy 37.4 percent on a shade less than three attempts per game — up from the 33.3 percent he shot last season. The starting lineup of Westbrook-Ferguson-George-Grant-Adams is a +5 on the season. Conversely, the starters and Schroder (instead of Ferg) are a +0.7.
Ferg has been an admirable Roberson replacement and appears to be growing stronger as the season progresses. He’s even been good enough to probably claim some of Schroder’s minutes — though, that would be surprising to see.
Nick Collison is getting his jersey retired on March 20 and the Internet is firmly divided on how much sense that makes:
I get it. I do. Collison averaged 5.9 PPG for his career, never won a championship, all that stuff we like to point at when determining the value of a player’s career. However, those arguments also reduce the game of basketball to numbers and decimal points. Collison’s impact on the Thunder organization is the stuff of legends — rewarding that with recognition is fine. Are you really upset about number four not being available? I mean, yeah, you were going to choose that one when you made it to the league… but just pick a new number, you know?
For what it’s worth, I believe the retirement of Collison’s jersey is well-deserved and a fantastic gesture on behalf of the organization. It was also a foregone conclusion and not worth being upset about.
We’ve all seen Steven Adams and his fantastic new commercial for the Oklahoma Beef Council. A new wrinkle to the story is that, in addition to getting paid for the gig, he’ll also receive 10 pounds of prime-cut Oklahoma steaks for every month he remains on the Thunder roster:
Something tells me this was his original request in terms of compensation. I’m sure his agent urged him to ask for some money, too.
All I got. Enjoy the rest of your Monday.