OKC Thunder notebook: Thunder, Mavs living at the line

Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle insists he's not posturing for more calls from officials.
BY JOHN ROHDE, Staff Writer, jrohde@opubco.com Published: April 30, 2012
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“Either one, there's no sleeping that night. There's no sleeping and you say a prayer for the coaches.”

DIVERSIFIED ‘D'

There has been a steady flow of mix-and-match defensively for the Thunder with players taking turns on various Dallas players.

“That's the flexibility and the luxury that we have,” Brooks explained. ‘We can throw different guys at different players. Russell (Westbrook) can guard ones and twos. Thabo (Sefolosha) can guard ones, twos and threes. (Kendrick) Perkins and Serge can guard each other's man and we like that. When you talk about a great player and you can put the same player on him for 40 minutes, great players figure it out.

“(Dallas sixth man) Jason Terry is a great player. He's a big-time, clutch player and if you have the same player on him he somehow, some way always figures it out.”

GREATER EXPECTATIONS

Two years ago, the Thunder was the youngest team in the NBA playoffs going against the defending world champion Los Angeles Lakers.

This year, OKC is still young, but more experienced and going against the defending world champion Dallas Mavericks.

Asked to explain the coaching difference between the two, Thunder coach Scott Brooks said: “The Lakers series, we didn't know what to expect. We were trying to trick you guys (reporters) into thinking that we did, but we didn't know what to expect. We were 20 years old and playing the Los Angeles Lakers.

“I think all of us (coaches) feel good in what we're doing. It doesn't guarantee that we're going to win the series, but we know how to win. We know what to expect in the playoffs.”

QUOTABLE

Brooks when asked if he noticed Durant's mother, Wanda Pratt, dancing during a timeout in Game 1, which the Thunder eventually won 99-98 on her son's jumper with 1.5 seconds left: “After the game, I was about to dance with her. That would have been a sight. I have no skills.”

BEAUBOIS PLAYS

Carlisle said before the game backup point guard Rodrigue Beaubois could see more minutes as the series continues.

Beaubois, who originally was drafted by the Thunder with the 25th pick in 2009, did not play in Game 1, but made his first appearance with 5:48 remaining in the second quarter of Game 2. He played five minutes and did not score.

“He's ready to play,” Carlisle said. “It's possible. If the situation presents itself, he'll be in there. It's one of the first times we've had all our guards healthy in a while.”



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