OKC Thunder notebook: Thunder takes out anger on Bobcats
NBA players and coaches constantly preach how long the regular season is and to not get too high or too low with each result.
Heading into Saturday night's home game against Charlotte, however, Thunder player and coaches still had some leftover anger from Friday night's 96-90 loss to a 14-23 Cleveland team at Chesapeake Energy Arena.
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"I think 'anger' is a pretty good word for it," OKC coach Scott Brooks admitted. "You do get angry when you don't play well. You do get angry when you don't play up to your level of expectations, but you can't dwell on it. You can't continue to be angry. You have to move on to the next game, which you have to learn from. You can't just say, 'Tough loss. Ho-hum, we're going to try to get the next one.' "
The Thunder took out its frustrations with a 122-95 rout of the Bobcats, who are now 5-34 (.128) and threatening the league's all-time lowest winning percentage for a season (.110).
Former Thunder players D.J. White and Byron Mullens were traded to Charlotte so they could get more playing time and both played well.
Mullens had 12 points and three rebounds in 19 minutes while White had 10 points, five rebounds and two steals in 22 minutes – primarily against OKC's second unit.
Neither player got off to a good start, however. White's first shot was blocked by Serge Ibaka and Nazr Mohammed stole Mullens' first pass attempt.
Former Oklahoma All-American Eduardo Najera, who has gained considerable playing time this month, played just four minutes and immediately made his presence known by getting physical with Ibaka and drawing a foul.
Najera is 35 and in his 12th NBA season.
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The Big Three of Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and James Harden hit 16 of their first 18 field-goal attempts.
Harden finished with a career-high 33 points, shot 11 for 16 from the field and 4 for 9 from 3-point range.
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