Daequan Cook entered this season with perhaps the most to gain from the departure of Derek Fisher. But after a week of training camp, it's beginning to sound like Cook's spot in the rotation isn't as secure as once projected — if not lost altogether due to the arrival of promising rookie Perry Jones III.
“It's too early right now, but definitely D.C. had a role last year and I thought he did a pretty good job,” said Thunder coach Scott Brooks. “But there's games where he's not going to play many minutes. There's games he's only going to play in the first half. You just have to be ready. But we have three or four guys that can play that role and we just have to see which one starts off.”
Before Fisher joined the Thunder in midseason last year, Cook was playing consistent minutes and had even started 22 consecutive games while Thabo Sefolosha nursed an injury. Once Fisher came on board, and Sefolosha returned, Cook's playing time dwindled. For a while, it appeared as if Cook would command a chunk of the minutes Fisher received last year. But Cook is now caught in a full blown position battle at the backup shooting guard/small forward spot.
“We have a good team,” Brooks said. “There's only so many minutes, and Kevin (Durant) plays a lot of minutes at that spot. So it's hard to get consistent minutes when you have a good team like we have with Kevin playing the minutes (he plays) and James (Harden) and Thabo.”