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by Mel Bracht Published: May 20, 2014

Kerr said he was surprised that Collison didn’t play in the fourth quarter. “I thought his defense and his hustle in the third quarter was spectacular. I thought he changed the game.”

He also noted the Thunder’s small lineup was a defensive liability.


•On the Fox Sports Oklahoma postgame show, analyst Nancy Lieberman said the Thunder needed to trim its turnover total. “The one thing they can’t do is to have the turnovers to the Spurs, that led to extra possessions because they are so good with their execution.” She was pleased with the Thunder’s bench play that “helped take the lead in the third.”

•Albert noted the last time the Thunder franchise won a Game 1 on the road was in April 1992 as the Seattle SuperSonics. “It’s time to eliminate that,” Kerr said. “They’re not the Sonics. They’re the Thunder.”

•TNT noted the Spurs trio of Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili tied the Lakers’ trio of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Michael Cooper and Magic Johnson for most playoff victories for a threesome (110).

•After Parker faked out Sefolosha with a crossover move in the first quarter, Miller said: “Tony Parker, showing some of his old self with the crossover here. I’m sorry Sefolosha. That may end up on ‘SportsCenter,’ my friend.”

•Regarding speculation that the Thunder might “amnesty” Perkins in the last year of his contract, Kerr said he still was needed in certain matchups, such against Duncan. “He’s still one of the best low-post defenders in the league.”

•In the pregame show, TNT had fun with Barkley. Noting that O’Neal had four championship rings and Kenny Smith two rings, a graphic noted Barkley “had lots of onion rings.” Promoting his website, Barkley was shown dressed as a woman from his “Saturday Night Live” appearance.

•Host Ernie Johnson noted he missed Sager, who is showing improvement, and his wild sport coats. Aldridge apologized for wearing a plain blue blazer. “I did the best I could.”

•Smith and O’Neal picked the Spurs to win the series; Barkley declined to make a prediction.

by Mel Bracht
Copy Editor, Sports Media
Mel Bracht is a copy editor on the presentation desk and also covers sports media. A 1978 graduate of Indiana University, Bracht has been a print journalist for 34 years. He started his career as sports editor of the Rensselaer (Ind.) Republican...
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