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Oklahoma City Thunder: OKC's young players will go through growing pains like Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook did

by Anthony Slater Published: October 29, 2013

But all hold crucial keys to the team's current and future outlook.

And the Thunder's message remains clear: Bear with them through the ups and downs, because there are sure to be both.

“I think that's what everyone on the outside should have with those guys is patience,” Durant said. “Just knowing this is their first go-around on this."

At times, Lamb's going to have trouble finding his shot, firing up a 2-for-12 shooting night. Other days, he may pop off for 22 on 9-of-16. We know because he did both in the preseason.

Jackson will have big scoring games and big turnover games. Adams could make a huge impact one night and not play the next.

It's part of early life in the NBA.

“The game is faster,” Brooks said, noting the 11-second difference between the college and pro shot clock. “You have to change ends of the court faster. Those are the things I will be patient with.”

But there are plenty of positives to be gained from a lineup filled with youth.

The biggest: Growth.

“Hopefully the team we are tomorrow,” Collison said, “will be different from the one we are at the end of the season.”

Barring injury, it's a safe bet to assume Lamb, Jackson and Adams will only get better as the season wears on. Because, well, that's what young players do as the experience piles up.

OKC has a half-decade full of examples to back up that theory.

It hopes Jackson, Lamb and Adams can follow that same path.

by Anthony Slater
Thunder Beat Writer
Anthony Slater started on the Thunder beat in the summer of 2013, joining after two years as's lead sports blogger and web editor. A native Californian, Slater attended Sonoma State for two years before transferring to Oklahoma State in...
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