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Oklahoma City Thunder: Russell Westbrook: 'Our whole team is a target'

Asked how it felt to be a target, Westbrook said: “I don't think about it, I just play. On the road, our whole team is a target … not just myself.”
BY JOHN ROHDE Published: March 2, 2013


One of the best quotes in the NBA, Denver coach George Karl had many thoughts on the Thunder before Friday's victory. Roll tape:

* “They (the Thunder) are so long. They can be a very explosive defensive team and they don't rely on that as much as they do their offense. I think lately they have been.”

* “I watched all three (consecutive victories OKC had entering Friday's game), and all three scared the hell out of me.”

* “(Ronnie) Brewer can be a very good defensive player and I have a feeling he was brought in to defend Kobe (Bryant) and maybe (Manu) Ginobili.”

* “Fish (Derek Fisher) is just a veteran guy who is incredibly good in the locker room. My son (Coby) was with the Lakers for one year and I bet you 80 percent of his stories had Derek Fisher in about how well he controls the locker room, what he does and how he helps the coach connect with the players.”

* “All that stuff that happens in the locker room has a high level of importance on the thin line of winning a playoff series. The thin line of this game comes in the top five or six teams in basketball. Fish understands it, has been so successful in winning in that area.”

* “From a skills standpoint, he (Fisher) is going to make a big shot, he's going to get away with a defensive play, fouling or playing aggressively when you have to be aggressive. I'm sure he's going to understand what the coach wants and put that on the court and demand it in the locker room.”

* “Statistically, (Kevin) Martin does a pretty good job in compensating. I think they miss (James) Harden's defense, his size and playmaking. They're still big, bit they're not as big. Westbrook makes them big.”

* “I think a win like this tonight would be important to us because of our youthfulness. Sometimes talk is cheap, but winning a game has much more meaning and much more substance to it.”

* “I know I'm a little more into this game in playoff importance. I want it to be a playoff game. I want it to be an angry game. I want it to be an intense game. Sometimes you get that, sometimes you don't. Fortunately it's not in that stage where it has to be one way or the other.”

* “I know we respect them and love how they play. They play a lot like we play. We had a more serous shootaround than we've had in probably three weeks.”

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