OKC Thunder: Kendrick Perkins will start against Miami Heat

Thunder coach Scott Brooks indicated a mid-game adjustment remains possible, especially if Oklahoma City experiences its recurring problems with Miami's small-ball attack.
by Anthony Slater Published: February 19, 2014
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photo - How many minutes OKC’s Kendrick Perkins plays against Miami could determine how both teams adjust their rosters. Photo by Bryan Terry, The Oklahoman
How many minutes OKC’s Kendrick Perkins plays against Miami could determine how both teams adjust their rosters. Photo by Bryan Terry, The Oklahoman

The biggest Thunder-related question entering Thursday's showdown with Miami remains unanswered.

Russell Westbrook is a game-time decision.

But the next biggest inquiry – whether coach Scott Brooks would keep Kendrick Perkins in the starting lineup – was solved.

“Yeah,” Brooks revealed on Tuesday afternoon, when asked if Perkins would start.

But within that, Brooks indicated a mid-game adjustment remained possible, even likely, should the Thunder experience its recurring problems with Miami's small-ball attack.

“We have some flexibility within our group,” Brooks said. “It's always about sacrifice in our group.”

In late January against Miami, Brooks started Perkins. But after the Heat jumped out to a 15-2 lead, Brooks took him out for the remainder of the game, starting Perry Jones in the second half. OKC outscored Miami by 30 without Perkins.

“He handled it well,” Brooks said. “He sacrificed. All of our guys sacrifice. Stars aren't the only ones in this league who sacrifice. Role players sacrifice.

“Some nights Perk gets big minutes, some nights he doesn't. But some nights Jeremy (Lamb) plays more, Thabo (Sefolosha) plays less. Some nights (Derek) Fisher plays a little, some nights Perry (Jones) plays more. That's what makes us a very good team. We have the flexibility.”

by Anthony Slater
Thunder Beat Writer
Anthony Slater started on the Thunder beat in the summer of 2013, joining after two years as NewsOK.com's lead sports blogger and web editor. A native Californian, Slater attended Sonoma State for two years before transferring to Oklahoma State in...
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