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Thunder/NBA notebook: No lineup change

BY MIKE BALDWIN, Staff Writer, Published: November 8, 2009
Coach Scott Brooks doesn’t like flip-flopping starting lineups. But since Etan Thomas is playing well, and Nenad Krstic is in a slump, would Brooks consider starting Thomas at center? The switch also would give the Thunder an added offensive weapon (Krstic) off the bench

"It’s always fluid,” Brooks said. "It’s a gut feel. Right now I like Nenad in the starting lineup. But nothing is permanent. They both bring something to our team that we need.

"Nenad didn’t play particularly well (at Houston) but he gave us great energy in the third quarter when we made a good run (Tuesday against the Lakers)... The bottom line is we need both of them to play well.”


Vince Carter (sprained ankle) won’t play tonight but the defending Eastern Conference champions, led by Dwight Howard, are off to a good start. The Thunder, riding a three-game losing streak, is coming off its worst defensive outing.

"They’re one of the best teams in the league even with (Carter) out,” Brooks said. "They’re loaded. They’re deep. They’re a talented team. Howard can impact a game and not score. He can get 20 rebounds and 10 blocks. They move the ball. They’re about as good a team as we’ll face.”


Houston coach Rick Adelman is among the growing list of coaches who rave about Kevin Durant.

"I like the way he matured from his rookie season to last year,” Adelman said. "He really got better. You could really see a big difference. He has all the ability in the world. I’ve been very, very impressed. To me, he seems to be getting taller.”

Durant denies growing, but Adelman said Durant’s height makes him a difficult matchup.

"He’s a unique player in that he moves so well,” Adelman said. "He shoots it so quick coming off picks. When you have the ability to shoot it that quick, it’s impressive. It’s kind of like Tracy (McGrady) with us before he got hurt. He could get a shot off almost any time he wanted to.”


No lineup change


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