OKC Thunder: Forward Nick Collison might have future as NBA analyst

BY JOHN ROHDE, Staff Writer, jrohde@opubco.com Modified: February 11, 2012 at 8:26 pm •  Published: February 11, 2012
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Thunder charter member Nick Collison might have found his calling for when his playing days are over.

Last Wednesday from a studio in Sacramento, Collison taped a segment for the Dan Le Batard “Highly Questionable” show and nailed the interview.

The segment could – and perhaps should – be used as an audition tape for Collison's potential future employment as an NBA analyst or commentator. Better yet, assign Collison to do player interviews away from the game.

Collison is smart, creative, insightful and has a well-humored way of looking at things a shade off-center.

There could be one catch. If Collison got the gig, he might have to shave. No national TV scruff.

“I think I could do that,” Collison said with a smile, “if the money is right.”

Collison said he was surprised he was asked to do Le Batard's show, but jumped at the opportunity.

“That definitely would be something maybe I could take a shot at,” Collison said of analyst work. “I know those jobs are hard to get, but I'd be open to checking it out.”

No longer are Collison's musings limited to Twitter. During the offseason, he was handpicked as the NBA player to blog bi-weekly on GQ.com throughout the 2011-12 season.

Collison's guest blogs have been well-received, and in prominent circles. Three-time All-Star, two-time scoring champ and Thunder teammate Kevin Durant gave his resounding endorsement.

“Nick's a funny guy, man,” Durant said. “He'd be a good beat writer.” High praise, indeed.

Writer Lang Whitaker recommended Collison for the blogosphere. Whitaker is an editor-at-large at SLAM Magazine and also a contributor to GQ.

Collison and Whitaker crossed paths early in Collison's NBA career when he was with the Seattle SuperSonics.

“I live in New York City, but the Sonics were playing in Jersey one night, and Nick and I started chatting in the locker room and hit it off,” Whitaker explained in an e-mail. “We've stayed in touch ever since, at games here and there, but mostly via emails, texts and Twitter.”

Whitaker did NBA playoff blogs for GQ last season and got reacquainted with Collison. “Having corresponded with Nick before, I knew he was an interesting guy and could be a funny writer,” Whitaker said. “So I asked Nick if we could do a post where we just sent a bunch of emails back and forth over the course of a couple of days. He was up for the idea.”

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NEXT FIVE FOR THUNDER

* Tuesday: vs. Utah, 7 p.m. (FSOK) – After having just one home game since Jan. 25, the Thunder returns for six of its next seven at home. Utah, meanwhile, will be on the third leg of a back-to-back-to-back road swing.

* Wednesday: at Houston, 7 p.m. (FSOK) – When OKC played Houston in January, the Rockets were struggling, but they quickly stabilized by winning 10 of their next 12 games. Houston will be coming off six-game road trip.

* Friday: vs. Golden State, 7 p.m. (FSOK) – Third meeting against the Warriors in a span of three weeks, but this time the Thunder gets them at home. Golden State never met a shot it didn't like and is always potentially lethal.

* Sunday: vs. Denver, 7 p.m. (FSOK) – First meeting of the season against Denver, which is the conference's second-best road team behind the Thunder and appears to be even a better team without Kenyon Martin and J.R. Smith.

* Feb. 20: vs. New Orleans, 7 p.m. (FSOK) – Third and final meeting against the depleted Hornets. A must win for OKC, particularly leading into back-to-back home games against the Boston Celtics and Los Angeles Lakers.

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