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Thunder notebook: Is James Harden too reliant on the leg-kick?

by Darnell Mayberry Published: February 14, 2011

James Harden has developed a knack for drawing fouls on jump shots.

The second-year shooting guard has exploited defenders by initiating the contact near the end of his shooting motion rather than going straight up looking for a clean shot attempt. Harden's act has led to multiple three-point play opportunities of late, and even some four-point play chances. Harden baited defenders in Sacramento and Golden State into fouling him on jumpers.

But has Harden become too reliant on the move?

“I think you just shoot your shot and if you get fouled you get fouled,” said Thunder coach Scott Brooks. “But if you go into every shot thinking about getting fouled you're not going to make it and you're not going to get enough calls on that.”


Guard Russell Westbrook didn't register a single rebound Sunday at Golden State. It was the first time since Dec. 14, 2008, Westbrook's rookie season, that he has failed to pull down at least one rebound.

“I just wasn't able to get my hands on one,” Westbrook said.

The Warriors out-rebounded the Thunder 47-33 and had a 20-2 advantage in offensive rebounds.


Kings rookie DeMarcus Cousins has rejoined the team and is expected to be in the lineup tonight against the Thunder. Cousins was suspended for one game following an altercation with a teammate in the aftermath of the Thunder's two-point win at Sacramento on Saturday.

The Kings on Monday also fined Cousins for his behavior.

“I wish to apologize to my teammates, the Kings organization and Kings' fans for my role in an unfortunate altercation between teammates,” Cousins said in a statement. “I accept full responsibility for my actions and know that I must keep raising my standard of professionalism to be my best and a great player in the NBA.”

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by Darnell Mayberry
OKC Thunder Senior Reporter
Darnell Mayberry grew up in Langston, Okla. and is now in his third stint in the Sooner state. After a year and a half at Bishop McGuinness High, he finished his prep years in Falls Church, Va., before graduating from Norfolk State University in...
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