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OKC Thunder notebook: Serge Ibaka's confidence waning

A day after Kevin Durant said Serge Ibaka's shooting struggles were all in his mind, Ibaka admitted that his confidence is waning.
BY JOHN ROHDE AND BERRY TRAMEL Published: May 12, 2013

DEFENSE INTACT

Despite shooting just 39.9 percent from the field and 33.3 percent from 3-point range offensively, OKC's defense has remained solid against the Grizzlies.

Memphis is shooting 41.7 percent from the field and 31.3 percent from 3-point range, which is well below its season averages of 44.4 and 34.5 percent.

“That's one of the things I love about our guys,” Thunder coach Scott Brooks said. “Usually when the shot doesn't go in, (a team's) defensive level drops off. That hasn't been the case. That's a testament to their commitment to win.”

BROOKS LAUDS FISHER

The Thunder's offensive woes are not related to Derek Fisher. Even after Fisher was 3 for 8 from the field (1 for 5 from 3-point range) in Game 3, Brooks praised the veteran guard.

“Fish is playing out of his mind, thank goodness,” Brooks said.

Fisher has averaged 11.7 points against Memphis and is 12 for 24 (. 500) from the field, including 7 for 13 (. 538) from 3-point range.

 

FOUL SHOTS NEEDED

Kevin Martin and Ibaka each shot 6 for 17 from the field in Game 3, but combined for just two foul shots.

Ibaka got two foul shots less than four minutes into the game, and that came on a fast-break opportunity. So in half-court offenses, Martin and Ibaka never got to the foul line.

“We didn't get to the free-throw line other than KD,” Brooks said of Kevin Durant, who had nine of the Thunder's 19 foul shots, but made only five. “We have to somehow get to the free-throw line. We've always been a good free-throw shooting team. We didn't make them at the percentage we'd like (. 632), but we didn't get there as much as we're accustomed to getting there.”

 

QUOTABLE

Brooks on his team's offensive woes: “This is a broken record, but I know we can hit shots. I've seen the ball go in the basket many, many times with our team and I have confidence that will happen, and hopefully soon.”


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