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Berry Tramel chat from H&H Shooting Sports: The Thunder are broken, but what's the answer?

staff reports Published: April 30, 2014
NewsOK Sports 10:23 a.m. Welcome to the Power Lunch chat from H&H Shooting Sports. Berry Tramel will be on at 11 a.m., but get your questions in now because we're going to get plenty.
Berry Tramel 10:45 a.m. Hey, everybody, I'm out at H&H Shooting Sports, I-40 and Meridian. Ready for my live chat. Come on out and say hello. Bob Barry Jr. is doing his Sports Animal show, too. If you can't make it, we'll chat online. We'll get started soon, so send in your questions.
NewsOK Sports 10:59 a.m. OK, let's get started. Come on out and have lunch here at H&H Shooting Sports. Have lunch at 4U Cafe. Great spot for a sandwich or a burger. So here come the questions.
former b-ball coach 10:59 a.m. Thunder: love 'em, hate 'em, love 'em, hate 'em, love 'em....take the ball to the hole and quit settling for contested 3's!!!
NewsOK Sports 11:00 a.m. Here's the problem. Memphis doesn't let you go to the hole easily. Durant got stripped, what? Four or five times? They've got good perimeter defenders, but they've also got Gasol in the middle. Clearly the Thunder takes some too-quick 3's, but a lot of the time, they take 3's because they have to.
Dalton 11:00 a.m. I just can't get a grasp on why the thunders defense has been so spotty, and downright horrible. Why must they get down 20 to actually play some decent basketball? Memphis has just worked them all series. Their fundamental, team style of play has just done a number on the Thunder stars. What is the likelihood that the Thunder can win in 7? I
NewsOK Sports 11:01 a.m. 25 percent. This is a 50-50 series. Four straight overtime games proves that. So it's a 25 percent chance that the Thunder wins both. As for defense, I don't know. They have to come out locked and loaded.
Guest 11:02 a.m. I understand that what Joe Crawford did was odd, but KD still needs to hit that free throw... What would you say is the reasoning behind KD struggling. Tony Allen? Fatigue? Or a mix of both and some bad decision making?
NewsOK Sports 11:03 a.m. I think Allen is in Durant's head. We see that at the free throw line. He's messed up. And you're right. Forget Joey Crawford. Durant has to make his foul shots.
Guest 11:03 a.m. You know, I hope they pull this series out, I really do. But if the thunder win, the Clippers (or possibly the warriors) await them in the second round. I'm not feeling confident at this point.. What do you think?
NewsOK Sports 11:04 a.m. I think if the Thunder survives, the next round will be like getting out of the desert. Like going from climbing a mountain to climbing a set of stairs. Now, the Thunder defense will be more tested, but man, the Thunder will have all kinds of room to score on that they haven't had in this series.
Guest 11:04 a.m. 4 overtime games. 3 go Memphis's way. The one the Thunder won was at Memphis. Hopefully theypull out a win in game 6. I know they can,but whether it happens or not is a whole different animal. How do you see the remaining two games in the series going?
NewsOK Sports 11:05 a.m. Toss ups. Total toss ups. This is the best series in NBA history., Four straight overtimes? Nothing like it. So it's time to play some more toss ups.
Guest 11:05 a.m. Berry, your guy, Perkins didn't show up against Z-Bo last night, as he lit up Perkins for 20 points, 8-15 shooting and 10 rebounds, 1 steal, 3 fouls in 41 minutes, now what can you say positive about him?
NewsOK Sports 11:06 a.m. Perkins played poorly last night, although Randolph's damage all came in the first quarter. He was 5-of-5 (4-of-4 with Perk in the game). In the last three periods and overtime, Randolph was 3-of-10 shooting with nine points. Perkins and his teammates have to come out locked in at the start.
ernie 11:06 a.m. Berry, I always enjoy reading what you print, sometimes I agree and sometimes I do not. That being said, just keep on printing.
NewsOK Sports 11:07 a.m. I believe I will.
ernie 11:07 a.m. I do not believe Coach Brooks is a problem. I believe the players today do what they want.
Berry Tramel 11:07 a.m. There is some truth to that. But Brooks has to get the Thunder to listen to him. Which means be patient on offense and be locked in on defense.
Guest 11:08 a.m. I think the wasted season of sticking with the original starters of Westbrook, Durant, Ibaka and Perkins are not clicking as they are in a hole or deeper in the 1st quarter and the 3rd quarter, as your coach Brooks is hard headed or confused with match ups that he has no clue what is right, your comment?
Berry Tramel 11:09 a.m. I think that's nonsense. At times during this very series, the Thunder starters have been the answer. This really isn't a rotation problem. The Thunder just hasn't found consistent defense and hasn't found a way to get Durant free from the Tony Allen demons.
Mohammad 11:09 a.m. What do think about the coach they way he is managing the game, Specially no time out left for cranch time?
Berry Tramel 11:10 a.m. Good question. Brooks had to burn some timeouts early, and then the last one was lost, I think, when Reggie Jackson dove on the floor for the ball. You always want to save a timeout or two. But in the end, that didn't cost the Thunder yesterday. They got to the end of regulation, then had plenty of timeouts in the overtime.
harry man 11:10 a.m. So when does the daily oklahoman writers head back EAST
Berry Tramel 11:10 a.m. As soon as Thunder practice is over, early afternoon.
JROD 11:11 a.m. So you're a THIRTY% career 3 pt shooter, you're currently shooting oh.. 18% from deep during the series, and you STILL want to fire up 7-8 threes a game? Really? That's what we've resorted to? And Brooks, bless him I have no doubts he's a super guy, but he's just over there clapping his hands and trying to be an encourager. Memphis has to just be ecstatic at what Westbrook is doing right now. And I won't even go into the fact that Adams and Lamb (and to some extent, Roberson and PJ3) are being under utilized in this series. I mean HELLOO Mike Miller is not missing anything, maybe try a long, quick PJ3 on him?? Have we forgotten what PJ3 has shown defensively at times this year? I'm sorry Brooks, I simply don't get it. It's broke - fix it.
Berry Tramel 11:12 a.m. Whatever is broke, Perry Jones is not the answer. Nor is Jeremy Lamb. Adams has played a little but fouls too much. Now Westbrook, that's a good point. Generally, I have no problem with the Thunder 3-point shooting, except Westbrook is taking too many. If it's in the final 5 seconds of the shot clock, OK. But not with 15 seconds left on the shot clock.
David 11:12 a.m. Is the league going to issue an apology for Crawford icing KD at the FT line, botching the shot clock at the end of the game (should have been 3.1 secs left) and not calling the foul on Ibaka? Lot of people on twitter said there was some sensitive stuff said last night regarding Crawford that isn't being released. Being sent to the league office
Berry Tramel 11:13 a.m. I'm sure the Thunder is filling the league office. But Crawford didn't ice Durant. He wasn't in any kind of rhythm anyway. Durant had every opportunity to make the second shot. He missed. The officials looked at the clock. And the foul on Ibaka, no one ever makes that call. A follow shot at the buzzer? The Thunder needs to play better and quit worrying about Joey Crawford.
Guest 11:14 a.m. Tony Slater 5 observations are Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Westbrook, Miller time, Ray Westbrook's changing the coach, Film room and KD’s surprising struggles, pick among the ones you think is the culprit for losing?
Berry Tramel 11:14 a.m. Uh, whichever one includes 48 minutes of defense in regulation. That's what the Thunder needs most.
Guest 11:15 a.m. Was this the worst home playoff loss in Thunder history or: 2011' Mavs Game 4 loss (blow 15 point lead w/5 left? 2012' Heat Game 2 loss (miss chance to go up 2-0), 2010' Lakers Game 6 loss (Ibaka doesn't box out, Gasol tip in at buzzer)
Berry Tramel 11:16 a.m. Dallas 2011. I don't think anything is close. The Thunder was up 15 with five minutes left and gave it away with quick shots and poor decisions and backcourt fouls. 2010 was not a bad loss at all. Game 2 vs. miami was bad, for this reason. The Thunder came out flat and not ready.
Earl 11:16 a.m. Way to many 3's. Down by 1 why not go to the hoop ? Is this brooks fault- looks like he is watching to much Travis Ford.
Berry Tramel 11:16 a.m. I don't want Durant going to the hoop in that situation. Durant driving has not worked this series. He can't drive on Tony Allen. Just can't. Now, if you want JAckson or Westbrook driving, OK. But not Durant.
Guest 11:17 a.m. Some fans think to win a title the team needs; an action and discipline coach, a center and a point guard that points, not just shoots out of control, what say you?
Berry Tramel 11:17 a.m. I say the Heat doesn't have a center or a star point guard. The Lakers of 2009 and 2010 didn't have a star point guard.
Ryan 11:17 a.m. If the Thunder lose tomorrow night, what's more likely to happen in the off-season? 1. Scott Brooks gets fired 2. Perk is amnestied.
Berry Tramel 11:18 a.m. Maybe the best question in the history of the chat. I think it's likely that neither happens, but I think it's possible that either happens. I think it's more likely that Perk gets amnestied. No, wait. I changed my mind. It's more likely that Brooks gets fired.
Matt M 11:18 a.m. Berry, explain to me why is it the Thunder Can't catch a break in this series? Last night, I thought there was some stupidity from the refs, but let's look at the bigger picture. Can the Thunder crawl out of this? 84 percent of the time, the team that takes game five goes on to win. right?
Berry Tramel 11:18 a.m. Something like that. Here's how you have to look at it. It's a 50-50 series. Every game is a tossup. Go win in Memphis, then take your chances back home.
Grad 11:19 a.m. Is Sam Presti on the verge of going Michael Corleone with the organization this summer, or do you think it'll be more of the "sustained success" model, i.e. relatively few changes?
Berry Tramel 11:19 a.m. Sustained success model. Now, that doesn't mean he won't make changes. But now way is Presti deviating from the long-term.
Robert 11:19 a.m. Clearly KD is not getting the calls like he usually does. So he needs to quit playing for the calls. Your thoughts.
Berry Tramel 11:20 a.m. Great point. You';re right. Durant seems to be acting like he's trying to get fouled. He's not nearly strong enough with the ball. He's got to be stronger. I liked his tip-in last night. Get to the offensive boards. Make Memphis pay for using Tony Allen on him.
Ryan 11:20 a.m. I could be wrong, but Durant looks tired to me. Any way he doesn't play for the U.S. team this summer?
Berry Tramel 11:20 a.m. I have no idea what the USA Basketball schedule is. But I agree. Durant does look tired.
Ryan 11:21 a.m. Win or lose this series, does Presti have work to do this summer?
Berry Tramel 11:21 a.m. He's got work to do every summer. The Heat won two straight titles and still has work to do.
-Q 11:21 a.m. Will this series go 7 games please?
Berry Tramel 11:21 a.m. Man, that would be fun.
Guest 11:21 a.m. That Miller kid hurt the Thunder late. Someone needed to guard him closer. Who was on him?
Berry Tramel 11:21 a.m. Oh, Butler mostly. Jackson some. The thunder got lost in transition a little.
Guest 11:21 a.m. Could it be player development was put on the back burner, because a few players did'nt want to mess with it?
Berry Tramel 11:22 a.m. I would say player development has remained supreme with the Thunder. But you don't do player development in the playoffs. You try to win every game the best way you know.
Ryan 11:22 a.m. What type of player is the Thunder missing for the line up that would help them handle Memphis?
Berry Tramel 11:23 a.m. Good question. Another perimeter defender would help. And maybe next year, Steven Adams is a player who can help beat Memphis. An offensive threat at center would help keep Gasol at bay on the pick'n roll defense. But you can't play Adams much now because he's foul prone and gets lost on defense.
Matt M 11:23 a.m. Berry, do you agree that this has nothing to do with coaching? I don't think it does. I think you're right about the Tony Allen demons
Berry Tramel 11:24 a.m. No. I don't necessarily agree. I think Brooks' message is hit and miss. He's got to get the Thunder locked down on defense, and it would help if he could encourage Westbrook to drive more instead of shoot the 3. What everyone says about the Thunder propensity for 3-pointers is really a Westbrook situation.
David 11:24 a.m. How can you like the lineups?. The starting unit in particular has no one that can space the floor. Team sure misses K-Mart and Thabo has been a joke
Berry Tramel 11:25 a.m. Thabo's offense has struggled, but he's a defensive stopper. He needed to play more last night.
Grad 11:25 a.m. Scott Brooks seems to make decisions that are extremely hard to understand from a viewer's perspective: pulling guys when they're making a big impact in the game, not playing younger guys, sticking with the same rotations even when they lose their effectiveness. Are there factors, outside of players' actual performance, that leads Brooks to play, say, Fisher over Lamb?
Berry Tramel 11:26 a.m. I don't know what you mean about sticking with the same rotations. Brooks has made all kinds of lineup switches in this series. Going small for the last 16 minutes of regulation last night. Going Jackson a huge chunk of Game 4. Fisher over Lamb is a clear defensive decision. Lamb really doesn't guard yet. Maybe he will soon. I know the Thunder likes him.
Ryan 11:26 a.m. Which team do you think is more fatigued going into the last two games?
Berry Tramel 11:26 a.m. I don't know. Durant looks tired. But everyone is tried. Griz, Thunder, everyone.
Me 11:27 a.m. When is the cheerleading media going to take the gloves off and begin dissecting the many issues with this team? Not many organizations can effectively squander two top 10 talents.
Berry Tramel 11:28 a.m. Reactionary. That's what your question is. Reactionary. The Thunder has been on a playoff incline every year until Westbrook's injury. This is the first time the Thunder has derailed. And they're not derailed yet. When are the reactionary fans going to be sensible?
JROD 11:28 a.m. Berry, come on man! No, PJ3 is not going to be our savior by any stretch, but Memphis is out there shooting dang near 70% in the first half at one point...if I'm a coach (which I never will be), I'll find SOMEONE who wants to play some dang defense. PJ3 can play some defense. Remember him on Lebron? yes, Lebron.
Berry Tramel 11:29 a.m. Actually, Jones' defense was largely abysmal. Scotty put him in the starting lineup for a few games and then had to switch to Roberson.
thunderfan 11:29 a.m. Cmon David the foul on Ibaka. Puhlease man. I'm with you on the free throw line thing. That was dumb but puhlease. it was a deperation put back on a rebound. That will NEVER BE CALLED AND SHOULDN'T. I DO THINK CRAWFORD IS A DOUCHE BUT THE THUNDER were outplayed last night. Down 20, had no business taking it to OT honestly.
Berry Tramel 11:29 a.m. Blaming refs is for losers.
ernie 11:30 a.m. Can a coach in the NBA really take charge of a team in today's world? The only one I see doing that is the Spurs.
Berry Tramel 11:30 a.m. It's not easy at all. It's very difficult. A large part of it is cultural. The Thunder has excelled with this culture, but this culture also includes loose reins on Durant and Westbrook. You sort of have to live with it.
Me 11:30 a.m. Percentage chance Durant signs with OKC if they are without a title after the 2016 playoffs?
Berry Tramel 11:31 a.m. I don't know. But not as great as if there is a title.
Earl 11:31 a.m. I saw brooks at some OSU games this year- he is doing a great Travis Ford impression. Run down court, shoot contested 3 with 15 sec left, repeat.
Berry Tramel 11:33 a.m. OKC's 3-point shooting was more effiicent than OKC's 2-point shooting last night. The Thunder scored 37 points on 31 3-point shots. The Thunder scored 48 points on 61 2-point shots, although we can add in some foul shots which would make it something 58 points on 68 or so 2-point tries.
CowboysRule-Chris 11:33 a.m. I've said the same thing. This team is like it's coached by Travis Ford. The similaries are uncanny lol. Agree with you on Durant, can't drive on Allen. I was shocked that we would't shoot a long jumper though at the end instead of a 3. Some of it is defense but Thunder, shooting too many 3s.
Berry Tramel 11:34 a.m. Again, I think it's a Westbrook issue. The Thunder shot 38 percent from 3-point range. 39 percent from 2-point range.
Chris 11:35 a.m. If the Thunder did fire Brooks what teams in the NBA are a better coaching job than the Thunder? Seems like we'd be up at the top
Berry Tramel 11:35 a.m. Very near the top. Almost every basketball coach in the world would be interested in coaching the Thunder.
Ty 11:35 a.m. Do you see lamb being here for a long time in okc
Berry Tramel 11:35 a.m. Yes. The Thunder likes him a lot. I chatted with Jeremy in Memphis, and he raves about the organization.
John 11:35 a.m. Thanks for all your incredible work Berry. Do you sense the Thunder players are aware of their shortcomings so far in this series- especially defensively? Also, looking to the future do you think Thunder would package picks for a vet talent like Green or Bass rather than a prospect?
Berry Tramel 11:36 a.m. No. I don't see the Thunder making a trade like that. And I do think they are aware of their shortcomings.
Me 11:36 a.m. If the 3-2 teams close out, who you got? Memphis or LA?
Berry Tramel 11:36 a.m. You know me. I'm big on Memphis.
Guest 11:36 a.m. Do you think the thunder would trade pj3 or lamb ?
Berry Tramel 11:36 a.m. Sure, for the right deal.
Ryan 11:36 a.m. Honest question: How many hours of sleep do you average a night during the Thunder playoffs? Is this busiest time of the year for you (attend games, articles, sports radio, chats, etc.)?
Berry Tramel 11:37 a.m. I end up with about 5-6. I'm up early to take my granddaughter to school. So I'm in bed between 1-2 a.m., up around 7 a.m.
Coach Arnold 11:37 a.m. I think it's an offense issue. Watch Memphis, Dallas, San Antonio, just about anyone, but the Thunder. How hard would it be to copy some Reggie Miller double screens and get Durant the shots he shoots best? The Thunder take the lazy approach and assume their superstars can just manufacture points.
Berry Tramel 11:37 a.m. The Thunder sets a ton of screens. A ton. What the Thunder doesn't do is pass the ball around with precision. I'm not saying they should. I'm saying they don't.
Guest 11:38 a.m. My question about player development was about the regular season we had. Could it be some of the players during the reg. season just didn't want to waist their time with it and use that time to pad their own.
Guest 11:38 a.m. Berry, now that the NBA has Banned Sterling for Life, do you think the name will push for a new team to completely erase the stiga that Sterling created? If so, what would you like the new team name to be?
Me 11:38 a.m. More suprising? OU's shocker in the Sugar or the Thunder's potential 1st round implosion?
Berry Tramel 11:38 a.m. No. The Thunder is dedicated to player development. If someone wastes their time, they generally get jettisoned.
Berry Tramel 11:39 a.m. Sorry for the mixup on answers. As for the Sugar, I would say the Sugar is a bigger surprise. I knew Memphis would be a dogfight. A total dogfight. I picked OKC in seven. I knew the Grizzlies would be tough.
Berry Tramel 11:40 a.m. OK, great questions. I've got to stop. Need to get to Thunder practice, then head to Memphis. I'll take all the unanswered questions and answer them in a blog today or tomorrow. Thanks to H&H Shooting Sports for having me out today.


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