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Oklahoma City Thunder to be without top two scorers tonight against Dallas

By Mike Baldwin - Staff Writer Modified: March 2, 2009 at 4:08 pm •  Published: March 2, 2009

“Robert played well and did a good job protecting the basket,” Brooks said. “He’ll get an opportunity to piggy-back on that performance. You can only play so many guys. We go with an eight-man rotation. Some guys have to sit. They have to be prepared when their name is called to play well.”

Malik Rose, acquired last month in a trade, played 14 minutes Friday night against Dallas and could play some. Brooks prefers an eight-man rotation but might play more players with his two young stars sidelined.

“Whoever is in there will have to play with a lot of passion and a lot of energy,” Brooks said. “This is a game guys have an opportunity to play extra minutes, more minutes than they have in the past.”

Nowitzki has averaged 43.5 points in down-to-the-wire wins over the Thunder.

“It’s probably crazy to say but we’ve done some good things defensively on him,” Brooks said. “He’s an incredible player, the MVP of the league a couple of years ago. We want him to put it on the floor, particularly with his right hand. He’s an incredible shooter with 3-point range.

“I’m looking forward to Nick and the other guys that get a crack at him and try to contain him. Make his touches, make their offense (difficult). Don’t let them get into a rhythm.”


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