If Kendrick Perkins needs help, Thunder can't provide any assistance

by Darnell Mayberry Modified: August 14, 2011 at 8:48 pm •  Published: August 14, 2011
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We don't know exactly what went down in Beaumont, Texas over the weekend.

But we know enough.

Kendrick Perkins was arrested early Saturday morning.

The sight of the Thunder center's name splattered throughout a police report is all the evidence we need to know there is a problem. Still, the more troubling tidbit that came out of Southeast Texas was Perkins reportedly collapsing Thursday night.

According to reports, Perkins was at a house party and suffered a seizure. He collapsed and fell on the concrete. Local authorities were called. Perkins was taken to the hospital where he was treated and released. A spokesman for Oklahoma City's scowling enforcer said he was dehydrated.

Who knows if that's the real story? It all seems sketchy.

The whole ordeal, however, has dealt Oklahoma City a harsh reminder of one thing.

This NBA lockout isn't good for anybody.

Not the fans. Not the arena employees. Not the league, its owners or their television partners.

But above all, this lockout, which is now in Day 46, is increasingly endangering the players and leaving the teams for which they play powerless to help. That's quickly becoming the most worrisome side effect to this labor dispute.

Perkins becomes the latest and most chilling case of player's well-being being at risk.

While playing in a pro-am game in San Francisco, the Los Angeles Lakers' Matt Barnes punched an opposing player. During a street ballgame at Dyckman Park in New York, Minnesota forward Michael Beasley approached a heckling fan standing courtside and shoved him in the face.

Those brief skirmishes are minor compared to Perkins needing medical attention.

Yet the Thunder, like all teams, is prohibited from contacting players or their representatives during the lockout. That leaves the team's front office in the dark about the particulars and pertinent questions regarding the events of this past weekend.

Was Perkins really dehydrated Thursday night? Was his reported collapse an isolated incident, or does he have a history of seizures? What were the “minor” injuries for which he was treated at the hospital? Was his reported anger and hostility toward a nightclub manager in the early morning hours Saturday justified, or is he on some sort of me-against-the-world rampage?

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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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