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OKC Thunder notebook: Kevin Durant battling turnovers again

by Darnell Mayberry Published: March 21, 2013

In his past nine games, Kevin Durant is averaging a staggering 5.2 turnovers, continuing what's been an on-again, off-again problem that has plagued him throughout his career.

For the month of March, Durant is turning it over 4.1 times on average, tying his highest average for any month in his career.

“He's trying to make the right pass. It's just that we have to be able to execute it much better,” said Thunder coach Scott Brooks. “He's going to find his way through it. I just like the fact that he's trying to make those passes and trying to help his teammates score. But we have to definitely do a better job of not turning the ball over. We don't want to do that as a team and guys don't want to do it individually.”

Durant has had five games of at least six turnovers in this recent nine-game stretch. One of those games was a seven-turnover night. In another, Durant turned it over eight times.

“Some games you can live with some of the turnovers that are looking for his teammates. We're going to be able to figure out those plays much better,” Brooks said. “It's the high turnover games that he doesn't want and I don't want. Those are the areas that we have to be able to control a little bit.”

Durant earlier this season had shown signs of extraordinary growth as a ball-handler and playmaker. He averaged just 3.1 turnovers in both December and January, one of his lowest turnover rates of his career. In those months, he averaged 3.7 and 5.2 assists, respectively.

In February, Durant averaged 5.5 assists against 3.3 turnovers, the best assist-to-turnover ratios of his career in any one month.

His slippage this month, however, has largely been a result of countless careless passes that defenders have intercepted.

“Kevin has always figured out ways to get better and that's another area that he can get better in,” Brooks said.

Durant has taken on more of a facilitator role this year in the wake of James Harden's trade to Houston. He's averaging a career-high 4.5 assists and, for the first time in his career, should finish with more assists than turnovers.

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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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