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Darnell Mayberry: Thunder bench needs to work on perimeter shooting, creating open looks

The Oklahoman's Darnell Mayberry took questions on the Oklahoma City Thunder today in his Power Lunch Chat. Join our Power Lunch Chat's Monday-Friday at 11 a.m. on Here's a recap of today's Q&A.
by Darnell Mayberry Modified: February 8, 2013 at 11:50 am •  Published: February 8, 2013

The Oklahoman's Darnell Mayberry took questions on the Oklahoma City Thunder today in his Power Lunch Chat. Join our Power Lunch Chat's Monday-Friday at 11 a.m. on Here's a recap of today's Q&A:

Darnell Mayberry 10:59 a.m. Greetings, ladies and gents.
tom 11:00 a.m. If/when the Kings move to Seattle next season, do you think there would be any interest in having OKC and Seattle switch spots in the divisions?
Darnell Mayberry 11:00 a.m. It's possible. But I haven't heard anything on that.
podirk 11:00 a.m. Mixing starters with the second unit has seemed to shore up some bench issues. Result of Brooks/coaching staff or poorer opponents?
Darnell Mayberry 11:01 a.m. I'd give credit to Brooks there for trying new things.
podirk 11:01 a.m. From the 'film session' after the Cavs loss. Any knowledge if Pruiti put together this session, or any info on his day to day with the team?
Darnell Mayberry 11:02 a.m. They keep that guy locked in the dungeon. I seriously have never seen him since he was hired.
podirk 11:02 a.m. Next time you see Thabeet be sure to remind him he is 7 3...SLAM THE BALL (Thabeet font).
Darnell Mayberry 11:02 a.m. I'll get right on that.
podirk 11:03 a.m. Presti gives you GM for the day...what trade do you do?
Darnell Mayberry 11:04 a.m. Eric Maynor and the Thunder's own first-roun pick for Jermaine O'Neal and P.J. Tucker.
podirk 11:04 a.m. What draft prospect do you want to see in a Thunder uniform next season? Who do you think the Thunder drafts with Tor pick..assuming it is still the Thunders at that time.
Darnell Mayberry 11:04 a.m. No clue.
podirk 11:04 a.m. Who does PJ work most with in Practice? Hoping he is spending lots of time with Collison
Darnell Mayberry 11:05 a.m. Yep. The big men and big man coach Mark Bryant.
Guest 11:05 a.m. What are two things the Thunder need to address in regards to the bench.
Darnell Mayberry 11:06 a.m. Perimeter shooting and maybe another shot creator.
John 11:06 a.m. What are two things the Thunder could do before the trade deadline?
Darnell Mayberry 11:06 a.m. Make a trade or stand pat.
tom 11:06 a.m. Should I stop worrying about Memphis as a bad playoff match-up?
Darnell Mayberry 11:08 a.m. The core of that team is still there: Zach Randolph, Marc Gasol, Mike Conley, Tony Allen. They still could be a tough matchup. But no way do I see them being able to beat OKC in a series.
Guest 11:08 a.m. What's the philosophy of the Thunder's defense as far as Pick/Roll? Where does the help come from, who do they want shooting, what shot will they give up, etc.
Darnell Mayberry 11:09 a.m. If tried to pin this down for a while now. There's no definitive answer. In short, it depends who the opponent is.
Darnell Mayberry 11:09 a.m. **I've tried**
Darnell Mayberry 11:10 a.m. Geez, is it the Suns? Light on Thunder talk today...Fire away people.
tom 11:13 a.m. PJ3 has disappeared on the floor when he has been out there and I'd like your opinion on why that is. Do you think he can't get into the flow with such sporadic minutes? Or do you think it is something else?
Darnell Mayberry 11:15 a.m. He's mentioned in the past how unpredictable minutes (and not a lot of them) has contributed to his struggles. But when you look at guys like Hasheem Thabeet and DeAndre Liggins and how they've maximized their court time, it becomes pretty difficult to use that as an excuse for PJ3.
Nick 11:15 a.m. Do you think Maynor deserves one more shot?
Darnell Mayberry 11:17 a.m. Deserves is a tricky word. It's not 6-year-old girls soccer we're talking about here. So even though Maynor has said and done all the right things since being replaced, I don't think it'd be smart on Brooks' part to just go back to him just to do it. Reggie Jackson certainly hasn't done anything to lose the job, and if Brooks begins to yank those guys in and out of the lineup there's a good chance that neither will be very effective.
Guest 11:17 a.m. how's Russell's knee?
Darnell Mayberry 11:18 a.m. Fine as far as I know. But then again, Russell Westbrook is the last person that's going to open up about an injury.
Guest 11:18 a.m. Are you suprised by how little the Thunder seem to care about how/what the media seem to talk/write about them? And, do you feel they're a fair team to work with as the beat writer?
Darnell Mayberry 11:19 a.m. Oh they care. There's a difference between not caring and not seeking attention. The organization doesn't go after attention. But they definitely care what is written. They read everything and go out of their way to keep things positive. But, yes, they are a fair team to work with.
Karen 11:20 a.m. Do you agree with Barkley's assessment?
Darnell Mayberry 11:21 a.m. In many ways I do. He basically said many of the same things that I and others have said in the past.
tom 11:21 a.m. Along the lines of the PJ3 question,the "thunder Way" gets some good publicity for developing players. But how much is is the system, and how much is just having talent? Was Harden not emotionally ready to be a franchise guy and was lucky to not be drafted into a spot where he HAD to contribute? Or did his game need some refinement before he was capable of being the guy he is in Houston?
Darnell Mayberry 11:23 a.m. No way was Harden ready. Look at a guy like Tyreke Evans. If Evans would have been with the Thunder, he might be a star. If Harden would have gone to Sacramento, he might be a bust. The Thunder does a great job of developing players.
Guest 11:23 a.m. How prevalent are the players' entourages when it comes to your involvement with them? Do they talk to you or play gatekeeper for the player?
Darnell Mayberry 11:25 a.m. No. Nobody really has an entourage. Durant has two close friends and his brother at nearly every game. Everybody else just has their brother or a girlfriend or wife or their parents around. The whole NBA entourage things really is overhyped.
harry man 11:25 a.m. so will the OKC thunder up make a trade before the DEADLINE
Darnell Mayberry 11:25 a.m. Maybe. I don't know.
Guest 11:25 a.m. Who makes the bigger fashion statement at the All-Star celeb game: Russell or Harden?
Darnell Mayberry 11:26 a.m. That's a toss up.
harry man 11:26 a.m. by watching some thunder games i never see kevin D. mom being on tv or at games. WHY is that...
Darnell Mayberry 11:26 a.m. Not sure. Why does everybody care so much?
Ben 11:27 a.m. Can Serge not handle the ball very well? I don't think I have ever seen him take a dribble.
Darnell Mayberry 11:27 a.m. He actually led the break once in the last game. Looked like he was handling fine. But in general, no, he's not a very good ball-handler.
harry man 11:28 a.m. i watched denver last night and they look good hey only all the sports writers and denver nuggets....
Darnell Mayberry 11:28 a.m. Let's see what they do in the playoffs.
harry man 11:28 a.m. Suns at thunder up prediction to follow
Darnell Mayberry 11:28 a.m. This ought to be good...Good and wrong. :)
Guest 11:28 a.m. is this chat with your sports editor live or hangout live..tell me please
Darnell Mayberry 11:29 a.m. Yes.
tom 11:29 a.m. Who are your favorite and/or most insightful NBA twitter follows?
Darnell Mayberry 11:30 a.m. Too many to mention. I really just follow other NBA writers who are sharing information.
Guest 11:30 a.m. do you think our players have any bad feelings toward harden for leaving?
Darnell Mayberry 11:30 a.m. Nope.
Guest 11:30 a.m. What's the players' card game of choice on the plane? And if it's boure, how do you play?
Darnell Mayberry 11:31 a.m. I don't know how to play that game. Kevin Durant apparently is a bit of a poker player. He recently posted a picture of him sitting at a table playing. But if these guys play cards on the plane, they keep it quiet.
Guest 11:31 a.m. you where the first one that said harden is outta here your around the team a lot did you feel harden was madd at scottie because of not starting??
Darnell Mayberry 11:32 a.m. I don't think he was mad at anybody for not starting. But I do think he wanted a bigger role and maybe an opportunity to be 'The Man.' He knew he never was going to get that here.
John 11:32 a.m. I think she used to be aorund more than she is now.
Darnell Mayberry 11:33 a.m. She was. My mother used to be around more as well when I was 19, 20 and 21. But then she stopped being around as much.
Nick 11:33 a.m. Jim Traber and idiot?
Darnell Mayberry 11:33 a.m. That's a little harsh, no?
Ben 11:33 a.m. Shame. Would love to see him pump fake and drive once in awhile.
Darnell Mayberry 11:34 a.m. Go back and watch that Spurs series. The game Ibaka was perfect from the field. He drove around Duncan with that cup dunk. It was nice.
tom 11:35 a.m. I think everyone gets worried when about KD's mom because deep down we Thunder fans are terrified she will influence him to leave OKC as a free agent.
Darnell Mayberry 11:35 a.m. Wow. I've never heard that before.
Guest 11:36 a.m. When you travel, do you stay in the same hotels as the team? If so, what's the groupie situation?
Darnell Mayberry 11:36 a.m. Haha. No. I don't stay at the same hotel. Can't say I have much knowledge about the groupie culture.
Guest 11:36 a.m. Was Kelly Crull let go? If so, do you know why? Just saw she was hired by the Padres.
Darnell Mayberry 11:37 a.m. They said it was a "mutual" decision to part ways. I take that to mean she wasn't brought back. But I don't know why.
harry man 11:38 a.m. here it is. 2 choices. ok world would darnell mayberry go deeep sea fishing with harry man? or thunder up win the 2012-13 nba championship...please tell all mr. mayberry. fishing it is from hm
Darnell Mayberry 11:38 a.m. This chat is nearing its end.
Guest 11:38 a.m. Anyone have a better-looking girlfriend/wife than Serge with Keri Hilson?
Darnell Mayberry 11:39 a.m. When your girlfriend is a nationally know singer that's hard to top.
Guest 11:39 a.m. Do you think coach Brooks has what it takes to bring the trophy in OKC?If the Thunder lose in the finals again do you see a change in coach?
Darnell Mayberry 11:40 a.m. Sure. Why not? I didn't like what he did in the Finals last year. I don't know anyone who did. But we'll see if he learned some lessons from those mistakes. But I don't see the team going in another direction if he falls short this year.
harry man 11:40 a.m. i just got word from my cat thunder. the word is thunder up 115, phoenix city 99...maybe OT...but sunday things happen for a reason in SUN land
Darnell Mayberry 11:41 a.m. Thank you and good night.
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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