/articleid/3355539/1/pictures/552117"> Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant, left, drives against Minnesota Timberwolves forward Rodney Carney during the second half in an NBA basketball game, Sunday, March 22, 2009 in Minneapolis. Durant had a game-high 30 points as the Thunder won 97-90. (AP Photo/Paul Battaglia)
But when you beat teams like that, those are good wins for us because we’re beating good teams.”
Jeff Green said he treats every game the same but is encouraged the Thunder is 17-21 since New Year’s Eve, a significant improvement compared to a 3-29 start.
"I just want to win,” Green said. "I never really think about playing spoiler. Beating good teams gives you a big confidence boost. To me, they’re all the same.”
That’s what players are supposed to say. But Thunder players celebrated last week after a win over perennial power San Antonio.
That didn’t happen after Oklahoma City defeated the hapless Washington Wizards.
"I think that was more for our fans,” Green said. "You have the Texas triangle. A lot of people might have rooted for Dallas and San Antonio, but now they have their own team. That’s big to beat those teams (geographically) close to us.”
Whether the Thunder is mired in a seven-game, February losing streak or a recent stretch in which Oklahoma City was 5-1 without leading scorer Kevin Durant, Brooks all season has preached improving in practices and games.
"I’m sure other teams (root for us), but we’re more focused on our guys and getting better,” Brooks said. "If you’re doing it for the right reasons, you should be excited about whoever you’re playing.”