Darnell Mayberry: OKC Thunder on pace to win 55 games

The Oklahoman's Darnell Mayberry took questions from readers in today's OKC Thunder Power Lunch Chat. Here's a recap of today's chat.
Oklahoman Modified: November 15, 2012 at 3:29 pm •  Published: November 15, 2012
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The Oklahoman's Darnell Mayberry took questions from readers in today's OKC Thunder Power Lunch Chat. Join our Power Lunch Chats Monday-Friday at 11 a.m. on NewsOK.com/Sports. Here's a recap of today's Q&A:

Is the Thunder in as much trouble as its fans think?

The Thunder is on pace to win 55 games. After presumable wins against New Orleans and Golden State, OKC will be on pace to win 60 games. What do you think?

Will Perkins or Zach Randolph get fined or suspended for their actions on and off the court?

The league will look into it. If it's determined that there was a fight, fines could be levied.

Did you witness the "brawl in the hall" last night?

No. And I regret it. As soon as Perkins sprinted off the court, my gut told me to go back there. Something told me that something was about to go down.

I’m starting to see more and more a trend of Thunder players begging for a foul instead of just playing on. I think it’s starting to affect their game ... your thoughts on this?

You're absolutely right. Durant is doing it. Westbrook is doing it. Martin is doing it. Perk is doing it. It's gotten out of hand.

Haven’t seen Kevin Durant’s mom in her seat. Any idea where she is? Hopefully not at all the Houston games.

I heard there is some kind of rift. I don't know much more than that.

Can you expand on the "rift" with KD's mom?

As I said, I don't know much more than that.

Memphis made everything difficult and took Martin out of the game. I didn't see many opportunities to get more than those four shots he got, and those were heavily contested. What can the Thunder do to get him better looks against the Griz?

Drive and kick.

The Thunder's big problems (turnovers and rebounding) are not Harden related. Do we still have to compare everything to the beard?

I hope not. Every time the Thunder has a bad performance, some people want to blame it on the loss of Harden. This team's issues run deeper than Harden. The majority of the problems are the same that the Thunder had when Harden was here.

When the trade was made for Martin, you knew the team would need to change up its approach with the second unit. Is it unfair to say Brooks has done a poor job of doing that so far?

I don't think it's unfair. Because it wasn't just last night. We've seen in the last few games how Martin is capable of scoring despite the team. That needs to change, especially in the fourth.

Brooks tried to spread blame around for Martin getting only 4 shots last night, doesn't the blame fall on him? The second unit was terrible last night and they barely even tried running Martin off of any screens.

No. It goes around. It starts with Brooks, but it should be spread equally.

How can anybody take seriously what Magic says when he says that Harden was "the Thunder's best defender"? Why are some making it seem as if the Thunder traded MJ away?

I don't know. I just don't know.

I've been down on Brooks for awhile, is that unfair?

Considering this team's improvement, collectively and individually, since he's taken over, yes.

The starting lineup is just awful. Every statistical measure bears this out. At some point Brooks HAS to recognize this right?

I think he's fully aware of those numbers. But I also have no doubt that he is fully aware that a prolonged stint with other lineups has the potential to look and be even worse.

This team won't win a championship this year as currently constructed. Do you think we will see any trade fireworks for the Thunder this year? They have a lot of great assets, expiring contracts and money to spare.

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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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