Thunder forward Serge Ibaka has been named to the NBA’s All-Defensive First Team for the third straight season.
Ibaka received 54 First Team votes, which were worth two points each, and 44 Second Team votes, which were worth one point each, for a total of 152 points. He was joined on the First Team by Chris Paul, Andre Iguodala, Paul George and Joakim Noah. Paul is the only other player to receive First Team All-Defensive honors in each of the last three seasons.
Ibaka led the NBA in total blocked shots for the fourth consecutive season, joining Dikembe Mutombo as the only players in league history to accomplish that feat. Ibaka appeared in 81 games during the regular season and helped the Thunder hold opponents to 43.6 percent, the third lowest opponent field goal percentage in the NBA.
Patrick Beverley, Jimmy Bulter, LeBron James, Kawhi Leonard and Roy Hibbert made up the All-Defensive Second Team.
SEVERAL THUNDER PLAYERS COMPETING IN SUMMER LEAGUE
Jeremy Lamb, Perry Jones III, Steven Adams and Andre Roberson are among the players on the Thunder’s current roster who will participate in this year’s summer league.
Rookie forward Grant Jerrett also is likely to participate. The Thunder also has two first-round picks in the upcoming NBA Draft that could join the summer league roster.
The Thunder will compete in the Orlando Pro Summer League from July 5-11 alongside Orlando, Boston, Brooklyn, Detroit, Houston, Indiana, Memphis, Miami and Philadelphia.
Five of this year’s top 12 draft picks could potentially be on hand, as well as five of last year’s top 12 selections.
KNICKS REPORTEDLY FINED FOR TAMPERING WITH FISHER
New York Knicks president Phil Jackson has been fined $25,000 by the NBA for tampering with Thunder guard Derek Fisher, according to a report by ESPN.com.
The web site reported that Jackson was fined for statements he made at a news conference last week about possibly hiring Fisher to coach the Knicks.
League rules prohibit teams from direct or indirect expressions of interest in other teams’ impending free agents.
Fisher has said this will be his final season as a player, and he has been linked to the Knicks job for months. ESPN.com also reported that Fisher is scheduled to discuss the Knicks job with Jackson this week.
LAMB UNSURE OF ROLE NEXT SEASON
Lamb said Monday that he isn’t sure whether he will receive a boost in playing time next season.
“Bigger role? I haven’t thought about it, what I want the role to be or anything like that,” Lamb said. “Just been thinking about the summer, try to get better, be the best player I can be going into next year. Haven’t really thought about that.”
Lamb said he wanted to help in any way he could, whether he’s the sixth man next year or not.
“So if that’s coming in playing defense, or coming in scoring, whatever the team needs most that’s what I want to do,” he said.
Thunder center Hasheem Thabeet on how difficult it is to stay ready when you’re not playing — “It’s tough, man. It’s tough. It’s like being on a standby flight.”