Under normal circumstances, poor defensive efforts in the preseason wouldn't be a cause for concern. But when you consider the Thunder's injury woes the team's shaky performances might warrant a raise of the eyebrow. Collison, perhaps the team's best position defender, remains out and Sefolosha and Krstic have been slowed with finger injuries. So it's not unreasonable to think the preseason lapses we saw in the preseason could spill over into the regular season.
Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook were both slapped with technical fouls this preseason under the league's new "respect for the game" rule. It's an issue that every team needs to be mindful of going forward. But for the Thunder, a team that saw its players accumulate only 13 techs last season, the new rule is one that players must be mindful of so that momentum doesn't change hands more often through giving up free points at the foul line.
By Darnell Mayberry