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OKC Thunder: Steven Adams breaks out in front of national audience

In his first substantial chance, the Thunder's rookie center arrived on the NBA scene.
by Anthony Slater Published: November 7, 2013


photo - Oklahoma City's Steven Adams (12) battles against Dallas' Vince Carter (25) during the NBA basketball game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Dallas Mavericks at Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Wednesday, Nov. 6, 2013.  Photo by Chris Landsberger, The Oklahoman
Oklahoma City's Steven Adams (12) battles against Dallas' Vince Carter (25) during the NBA basketball game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Dallas Mavericks at Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Okla. on Wednesday, Nov. 6, 2013. Photo by Chris Landsberger, The Oklahoman

Dallas' 15-year veteran rolled across the paint and drilled Adams with a blatant elbow, leading to Carter's ejection. Adams wasn't even fazed.

“I saw it on the replay and said, ‘Goodness,'” Jeremy Lamb recalled. “Looked (at him) and I said, ‘Did that hurt?' He said, ‘What?' I said, ‘the elbow, did it hurt?' He was like, ‘Not really.' So he's a real tough kid.”

Through one training camp and a few games, Adams has already developed a tough reputation among his teammates. He was a rugby player growing up and, at times, isn't afraid to flash that part of his past.

“Real physical,” Lamb said. “He does a lot of little things that not everybody sees and having someone like that on your team is always good.”

“He protects the rim, the paint,” added coach Scott Brooks. “Still needs to learn a lot about the game, this level. A lot of things he will pick up as the season goes on.”

But at this point, OKC and its adoring fans couldn't be happier with their first-round pick.

He's a high-energy, productive big. An exciting interior force that already contains qualities that the Thunder has lacked at that center position since moving to the metro.

“It's going to be game to game,” Brooks said, when talking about his allocation of minutes to the center position. 

But if he plays like he did Wednesday, it'll be tough to keep him off the floor.