• Kevin Durant defends Kobe Bryant on Twitter

    Erik Horne | Published: Fri, Aug 8, 2014

    Kevin Durant said a few weeks back that he was deleting Twitter from his phone. That doesn’t mean he’s staying off social media all together, however. And just because he pulled out of Team USA for the summer, doesn’t mean he’s removing himself from basketball barber shop talk. Durant got into a healthy debate with […]

  • ESPN suspends Dan Le Batard for LeBron James billboard 'stunt'

    Published: Fri, Aug 8, 2014

    ESPN television and radio host Dan Le Batard was suspended for two days after he paid for billboards in Cleveland that mockingly read “You’re Welcome LeBron; Love, Miami” and displayed the two title rings he won with the Heat, according to USA TODAY. The billboards were a sly reference to James’ famed letter to Cleveland, which seemed to thank everybody except for Miami fans and their four years of support. The top line was written in Comic Sans, of course. “Dan LeBatard will be off the air for two days, returning Monday. His recent stunt does not reflect ESPN’s standards and brand. Additionally, we were not made aware of his plans in advance.”  

  • Kevin Durant to withdraw from Team USA Basketball

    BY DARNELL MAYBERRY | Updated: Thu, Aug 7, 2014

    Thunder forward Kevin Durant announced Thursday that he is withdrawing from Team USA Basketball this summer. Kevin Durant statement - pic.twitter.com/5gslzSYEHt — Darnell Mayberry (@DarnellMayberry) August 7, 2014 //   // As recently as this week, it was reported that no more players would withdraw from Team USA this summer following George's injury. The injury to Paul George in a Team USA scrimmage is reportedly not the reason for Durant's decision. Durant joins the long list of stars to withdraw from Team USA this summer. Thunder teammate Russell Westbrook was one of the first to pull out of the player pool earlier this summer. Early last week, Durant spoke of sticking around

  • Markel Brown is answering your Twitter questions Friday

    Published: Thu, Aug 7, 2014

    Former Oklahoma State guard Markel Brown will answer questions live on Twitter at 2 p.m. on Friday. Brown, a second-round pick of the Brooklyn Nets, will take over the Nets' Twitter account. You can get your questions in to Brown with the #AskMarkel hashtag.  

  • Kevin Durant gives first look at NBA2K15

    Published: Thu, Aug 7, 2014

    Kevin Durant gave us a first-hand look at some video from NBA2K15, set for release Oct. 7 on multiple platforms. Durant pubbed the video above via his Instagram account on Thursday.

  • Kevin Love is going to Cleveland and how it affects the Thunder

    erik horne | Published: Thu, Aug 7, 2014

    The trade can't be completed until Aug. 23, but Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports reports thath the Minnesota Timberwolves have an agreement to send Kevin Love to the Cleveland Cavaliers for Andrew Wiggins, Anthony Bennett and a first-round pick. West to East. That's the biggest effect on the Thunder and the league. Love moving to the Cavs is another feather in the lesser conference's hat. The Love move emphasizes NBA team's desire to lump a trio of stars together for a championship run. There have been Super Friends trios throughout NBA history, but the trend of trading and pairing up three elite players fired up with the Boston Celtics in 2008 (Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen, Paul Pierce), continued with the Miami Heat (James, Chris Bosh, Dwayne Wade) and carries on with the Cavs. The big difference between the Western Conference super trios in that time and the East's is that the Spurs and Thunder created theirs in house. Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili, Tony Parker for the Spurs. Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, Serge Ibaka for the Thunder. The Washington Wizards are thinking Super Friends 2016 with KD-John Wall-Bradley Beal. If that happened, the power balance would shift for sure. But as for now, the West is still king in talent and depth, particularly with questions in the East about Derrick Rose being able to stay healthy in Chicago and Paul George's gruesome injury sidelining him for probably all of the 2014-15 season. Love's move doesn't effect the Thunder in terms of how they're going to get out of the West. It's still San Antonio and everyone else.

  • Greg Oden arrested on battery charges

    Published: Thu, Aug 7, 2014

    Former No. 1 NBA draft pick Greg Oden has been arrested in Indianapolis on misdemeanor battery charges. Police in the suburban community of Lawrence say the 26-year-old was arrested early Thursday on two preliminary counts of misdemeanor battery and remains jailed. Oden was selected first overall in the 2007 NBA Draft by the Portland Trail Blazers, one spot ahead of Thunder forward Kevin Durant.

  • New billboard takes aim at LeBron James

    Published: Thu, Aug 7, 2014

    It looks like someone's still a little bitter over LeBron James' decision to leave the Miami Heat and sign with his hometown Cleveland Cavaliers, according to The Post Game. Miami resident and popular ESPN personality Dan Le Batard made headlines last week when he tried to buy a full-page ad in the Cleveland Plain Dealer in an attempt to troll James and Cavaliers fans. The Plain Dealer rejected Le Batard's request, and so the host of "Highly Questionable" took matters into his own hands. A billboard recently popped up a quarter mile east of Highway 8 in Akron with a message strikingly similar to the one in the proposed newspaper ad, The Post Game reports.

  • Tell us who should be the next Thunder TV analyst

    Erik Horne | Published: Wed, Aug 6, 2014

    There will be a new Thunder TV team in 2014-15. We need to get this figured out. The combination of Brian Davis and Grant Long had become a Thunder television staple since the team arrived in 2008. But with Long resigning in July after six seasons on the Thunder broadcast, there’s a void that needs […]

  • Marcus Smart, Kevin Durant get plenty of love on NBA Rookie Survey

    Published: Wed, Aug 6, 2014

    The results from the NBA's Rookie Survey are out, and Marcus Smart is thought highly of by his fellow classmates. At the league's annual Rookie Photo Shoot Sunday, 38 rookies were asked eight questions about the rookie class. Smart tied for best rookie defender with K.J. McDaniels of Clemson. Each player received 13.5 percent of the vote from their peers. The former Oklahoma State guard also was voted third in the "best playmaker" category behind Tyler Ennis and Kyle Anderson, and was second in the "funniest rookie" vote behind Twitter star Joel Embiid. Smart stole the show at the rookie photo shoot after he did a hilarious scavenger hunt for ESPN's SportsNation. Twenty-five percent of rookies said Kevin Durant was their favorite player in the NBA. Durant beat out Kobe Bryant (19.4 percent) and LeBron James (12.5). Thunder teammate Mitch McGary tied for second in the "most overlooked" rookie category with 8.3 percent of the vote. More than 50 percent of the rookie class thinks Milwaukee's Jabari Parker will be the rookie of the year. Seven years ago, Durant was the rookie of the year choice in the survey.

  • Blake Griffin working out, says 'back is not fractured'

    Published: Wed, Aug 6, 2014

    Los Angeles Clippers forward Blake Griffin, who pulled out Team USA practices to allow a small fracture in his back to heal, continues to work out and expects to be ready for next season. The former OU star told the Los Angeles Times "It's less than a hairline, and my back is not fractured. I can still come out here, and I can do my workouts, and I can do everything I used to do. I just shouldn't be playing and practicing every day." Griffin  withdrew from Team USA on July 24 to rest up for the NBA season. He was one of  several high profile NBA players to pull out of Team USA camp this summer. "My whole thing is I didn't want to go inot [Clippers training] camp and put myself in a worse position."

  • ABA memories: Don't believe Will Ferrell

    Berry Tramel | Updated: Wed, Aug 6, 2014

    For the Wednesday Oklahoman, I wrote about David Vance and the birth of the blocked shot as an official statistic. You can read that column here. But the occasion gave Vance and I reason to look at all kinds of great memories about the ABA. The American Basketball Association spent nine years as an upstart […]

  • David Vance's Kentucky Colonels were the ABA's marquee franchise

    BY BERRY TRAMEL | Published: Tue, Aug 5, 2014

    For four seasons, the Colonels’ front line included Dan Issel and Artis Gilmore, both of whom became NBA stars after the 1976 merger and are in the Basketball Hall of Fame.

  • Oklahoma City Thunder: City can lay claim to the league's top shot blocker and the man who invented the blocked shot stat

    BY BERRY TRAMEL | Published: Tue, Aug 5, 2014

    David Vance and Serge Ibaka share more than an area code. Both are preeminent figures in the story of basketball shot blocking.

  • San Antonio Spurs name Becky Hammon first hired female assistant coach in NBA history

    Published: Tue, Aug 5, 2014

    The San Antonio Spurs announced that Becky Hammon has been hired as an assistant coach, making Hammon the first female assistant coach in NBA history. Hammon, who is currently in her 16th WNBA season with the San Antonio Stars, announced on July 23 that she would retire as a player at the conclusion of the 2014 season. Named one of the WNBA’s Top 15 Players of All-Time in July of 2011, Hammon ranks seventh in WNBA history in points (with 5,809), fourth in assists (1,687) and sixth in games (445).

  • Report: Kevin Durant could net $30 million per year from Under Armour

    Published: Tue, Aug 5, 2014

    Thunder forward Kevin Durant could reportedly net as much as $30 million a year in a deal with Under Armour. A New York Daily News report says that Nike and Adidas are also in discussions with Durant over his future. Under Armour has its headquarters in Maryland -- Durant's home state. Durant's seven-year deal with Nike expired last week. Daily News writer Frank Isola suggests that a deal with Under Armour could be beneficial for the Washington Wizards (as well as the New York Knicks and Brooklyn Nets) when Durant hits free agency in 2016 . The Wizards and Under Armour are each owned by University of Maryland graduates. Durant  reportedly canceled a three-day visit to Nike's headquarters this week.

  • WATCH: James Harden gets tips from Charles Barkley in Foot Locker commercial

    Published: Tue, Aug 5, 2014

    Former Thunder guard has appeared in a series of funny commercials for Foot Locker in recent years. His latest doesn't disappoint. Harden asks Hall of Famer Charles Barkley for some tips for the upcoming season, and Barkley (with a guest appearance from Scottie Pippen) reminds Harden that all the greats have a short memory.

  • Drake tries to recruit Kevin Durant to Toronto

    erik horne | Published: Tue, Aug 5, 2014

    Rapper Drake did his best to recruit Kevin Durant to the Toronto Raptors last weekend. Drake, an avid basketball fan and friend of Durant's (who's even shouted him out in songs) tried his darndest at OVO Fest in Toronto to get the crowd excited about a potential KD to Canada sell in 2016. "I just wanna show one of my brothers something. My brother Kevin Durant was kind enough to come to the show tonight and watch us. I just wanted to see what would happen if he came to play in Toronto," Drake said. A mild KD chant starts in the arena before Drake moves on. The rumors have been hotter about Durant to Washington, but that won't keep Drake and friends from trying their luck. Newly-resigned guard Greivis Vasquez has also professed his desire to get Durant, his former high school teammate , in Canada.

  • Marcus Smart goes on NBA rookie scavenger hunt

    Published: Mon, Aug 4, 2014

    Boston Celtics rookie guard Marcus Smart had the honor of being ESPN SportsNation's first-ever scavenger hunt participant. The results were (as expected) crazy. The former Oklahoma State star worked his way through the NBA rookie photo shoot, getting his fellow rookies to do everything from dunk in a Superman onesie to play with Ninja Turtle action figures. Brooklyn Nets guard Markel Brown was one of the victims of Smart's reign of scavenger hunt terror, as SportsNation made Smart pants his former backcourt mate.

  • Report: Kevin Durant, Team USA stars committed to team after Paul George injury

    Published: Mon, Aug 4, 2014

    Paul George's devastating leg injury cast some darkness on Team USA's preparation for the FIBA World Cup, but reports are that all players are keeping their names in the pool for the final 12-man roster. Thunder forward Kevin Durant is among the 19 players that have reportedly talked about the need to stick together following  George's broken leg in Friday's Blue vs. White scrimmage. On general manager reportedly told ESPN "No one [on] this team wants to walk away because that would seem unfair to Paul." George's gruesome injury again raised questions around the benefits of professional players participating in international basketball .