3 min read

Thursday Bolts – 12.1.16

Thursday Bolts – 12.1.16

Tom Ziller of SB Nation: “But doing so in this fashion directly degrades what Oscar did,


suggesting that Robertson’s gaudy numbers were largely a function of the volume of opportunities he had. That is not fine, and it’s frankly innumerate in a different sort of way than we’re used to seeing. Might those extra possessions affect the game in other ways? Westbrook runs up and down the floor like a machine. Could he do that another dozen or two times per game? The norm was for superstars to play 40-plus minutes every night in the early ’60s, even at that crazed pace. The Big O averaged 44 minutes per game in ’62. Could Westbrook be this resilient and effective playing an extra nine minutes per game at this level, at that pace? On the surface, the extra possessions and extra minutes just look like more opportunities for numbers. You must also consider the deep and wide effects the extra possessions and minutes would have.”

Erik Horne: “Before his customary sprint onto the court, Russell Westbrook made an out-of-the ordinary move. He walked over to the Washington bench and spent a few moments with his former head coach Scott Brooks. Minutes before, Brooks soaked in a standing ovation from the crowd at Chesapeake Energy Arena. But Brooks, ever the competitor, wanted to beat his former team. Westbrook wanted to beat Brooks, too.”

My story from last night.

Berry Tramel: “Betty Elder’s patience wavered Wednesday night. About an hour before tipoff, the short lady on the tall chair was ready to see her old friend. Elder had a Plan B in case Scotty Brooks didn’t make it down the hallway. “If he doesn’t, they may have to pull me off the court,” said Elder, which probably would have been doable, since she’s about 5-foot-nothing and turns 90 years old in May. But no special operations were required. Foreman Scotty exited the unfamiliar visitors locker room at Chesapeake Arena on a mission. “Where’s the young lady?” the Washington Wizards coach asked when he spied Elder by the door that leads to the tunnel, a path Brooks traveled hundreds of times as coach of the Thunder. That path usually took Brooks right past Elder, an NBA usher since the Hornets came to Oklahoma City way back in 2005.”

Colin Cowherd has a take, you guys.

Chris Ballard of SI on Sam Hinkie: “He certainly looks different. In Philly he was clean-cheeked, with a perfect left-side part, a Mad Men character come to life. He owned 25 blue blazers, all size 40 regular. The goal: reduce decision fatigue, the psychological phenomenon in which the more choices we make in any given day, the worse we are at making them. So, like Steve Jobs (black turtleneck, jeans) and Barack Obama (blue or gray suit), Hinkie settled on a uniform and ran with it. Boom! Decades of choices, eliminated in one fell swoop.”

(Whispering) Kevin Durant really is having an amazing season.

Zach Lowe of ESPN.com on the Clippers: “Steve Ballmer, L.A.’s moneybags owner, has already said he’ll pay the cost. Maxing out Griffin is a no-brainer, and the team expects Paul to demand the full five-year max (or whatever the longest possible deal ends up being in the revised collective bargaining agreement) to stick around, per several league sources. That would take him well past age 35. Gulp. Suitors will line up for Redick. Rivers was right last fall: teams grow stale. People decide to move on. If the ending is unhappy again, I’d bet on at least one big change in Clipperland. For now, the team is trying to enjoy the journey — and the clean locker-room air.”

The Ringer has OKC seventh.