The Oklahoman's Darnell Mayberry took questions from readers in his OKC Thunder Power Lunch Chat today. You can join our Power Lunch Chats Monday-Friday at 11 a.m. on NewsOK.com/Sports. Here's a recap of today's chat:
What options are available if Maynor is on the trade block? I have played with the ESPN trade machine and the pickings appear to be slim.
The pickings are indeed very, very slim, especially since any trade that brings back a little more salary will put OKC over the tax line. That's something the Thunder can't afford to do this year. But I've got a name for you. Derrick Williams. He appears to be on the outside looking in up in Minnesota, and the Thunder might be able to get the former No. 2 overall pick for peanuts (stop me if you've heard that before). But Williams has a sizable contract that could do to the team's payroll exactly what the team can't afford. Presti would have to get creative.
I know you’ve said in the past you see the Thunder making some sort of move at the deadline to add a piece. Any idea on who might be targeted or still unsure?
I don't know who the target might be. But I've got my eyes set on Derrick Williams in Minnesota.
The Thunder broadcasters mentioned a few games back about the coaching staff working on Serge's hand eye coordination using some unorthodox methods. Can you confirm and elaborate?
They've done that for years with Serge and others. There's a funky set of glasses that Serge has work that distorts his vision. With those on, he has to catch different types of passes from a coach. Bounce passes in different locations and soft chest passes, for example. Another drill is throwing a tennis ball off the wall and catching it.
Lots of bigs in the draft this year. Can/will the Thunder snag a talented one with Toronto's pick? Zeller, Noel, Len, Plumblee?
I'm thinking that pick will be somewhere between 4 and 7. If that's the case, I can't see the Thunder not taking a big man. I haven't seen much of the names you mentioned aside from MP3. But the one game I saw from Noel, he seemed to need a lot of work offensively. Defensively, he has raw talent that could help. But this team already has the league's leading shot blocker.
What is going on with DeAndre Liggins? I thought the Thunder really liked him.
They do. He's been sent Tulsa with the goal of getting him some playing time.
Maynor is quickly morphing into Kevin Ollie. I thought that Reggie looked pretty good in the JV game last night. Scotty has to at least think of bumping Reggie up to backup point doesn't he?
With all due respect to Kevin Ollie, ouch. Maynor hasn't looked quite like a 36-year-old backup. I thought he was much better last night in terms of setting up teammates. His shot still didn't fall though. As for the JV game, I didn't put any stock whatsoever into any of those minutes.
Is Maynor being traded the only way that Reggie Jackson gets regular minutes?
I want to give Scott Brooks the benefit of the doubt. I really do. But his track record suggests the answer is yes. Look at James Harden and Serge Ibaka. It took Jeff Green being traded for Brooks to finally play those guys the minutes they deserved. I'm still holding out hope that Brooks maximizes his roster without having players yanked from him.
Thabeet seems to be playing angry. Is he playing with an edge or is it just me?
You're right. He’s playing with an edge. I don't think he's playing "angry" though. He's probably the nicest guy on the team. Soft-spoken. Very polite. Extremely respectful. It's just when he gets on the court, he's been all business — which is something he's needed to be for quite sometime.
Do you see the Thunder keeping the Raptor pick or shipping it off in the deadline?
If they trade that pick I'll take back every good thing I've ever said about them.
Is Serge on his way to becoming a 20/10 guy?
No. There are only a handful of those guys in the league. Ibaka has a long way to go to get there. The team's makeup also will make it extremely difficult. He's the third option, and at times he's the fourth option. Name me a fourth option who is a 20/10 guy?
I remain convinced that Demarcus Cousins would be perfect for the Thunder. Is he an automatic max contract guy? Are the Kings getting sick of his act?
Based on talent, he's a max guy. And somebody is going to give him a truckload of money. But I don't know if he's worthy of it based on his attitude. He just doesn't seem to be a great locker room fit with the Thunder. The dude confronted Spurs color commentator Sean Elliott for crying out loud.
To be fair to Cousins, Elliot needs to be confronted every now and then.
No player ever has a right to confront a broadcaster for analyzing the game and the personalities that make it up, in my opinion. Not if the broadcaster is doing his job with professionalism and respect.
Is Thabo going to be around for a few years or is he going to be a salary cap victim?
I think he sticks. He's on a cap-friendly number and his effectiveness hasn't tailed off.
Who guards Harden on Wednesday? Will the crowd boo him?
Thabo to start, and then Kevin Martin ... Cheered by most when introduced. But as soon as he starts making shots, whining to the officials, or doing that 3-point celebration, be prepared.
Lamb seems very lost. Did he just mentally check out when he was traded and realized he wouldn't get many minutes?
He's a rookie. A very young and raw one at that. I'm not sure why so many people expected him to be a contributor so soon.
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