Thunder fails to play catch-up

BY MIKE BALDWIN Modified: November 14, 2008 at 1:01 am •  Published: November 14, 2008
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photo - Orlando’s Dwight Howard blocks the shot of Oklahoma City’s Nick Collison during Wednesday’s game. The Thunder is shooting a league-worst 40 percent from the field. PHOTO BY BRYAN TERRY, THE OKLAHOMAN
Orlando’s Dwight Howard blocks the shot of Oklahoma City’s Nick Collison during Wednesday’s game. The Thunder is shooting a league-worst 40 percent from the field. PHOTO BY BRYAN TERRY, THE OKLAHOMAN
The Thunder has been forced to play catch-up much of the NBA season.

The most sobering statistic? In half of its games, the Thunder has trailed by 20, 14, 10 or 8 points after one quarter.

"We can’t do what we did against Utah and what we did against Orlando,” said coach P.J. Carlesimo. "It’s encouraging we get back into games, but we can’t keep digging holes.”

Oklahoma City has trailed by double digits in the first quarter in five of its eight games.

The Thunder fell behind by 31 points at Utah last week but cut the deficit to eight points in the fourth quarter. Against Orlando on Wednesday, Oklahoma City trailed by 32 points, closed to within 14 but never got closer.

"The effort was there, but the intensity wasn’t the first 24 minutes,” said Thunder center Robert Swift. "We picked it up in the second half. But we could have, and should have, played with (Orlando) the full 48 minutes. It’s a learning experience for a young team.”

The Thunder’s defense has shown improvement compared to last season. The problem now is offense. More specifically, it’s poor shooting.

Oklahoma City is last in the league in field goal percentage (40. BLOG: OKC Thunder


Related Links

Thunder at Knicks
→When: 6:30 tonight

→Where: Madison Square Garden, New York

→TV: Fox Sports Oklahoma (Cox 37)

→Radio: WWLS 98.1-FM, WWLS 640-AM

→Live blog: blog/newsok.com/nbainokc

Probable starters

Thunder (1-7)
Pos. Player Ht. Pts. Reb Ast.
G Earl Watson 6-1 8.1 3.8 5.9
G Kevin Durant 6-9 22.0 4.6 2.0
F Jeff Green 6-9 14.4 6.5 1.8
F Nick Collison 6-10 6.1 6.6 1.0
C Johan Petro 7-0 5.3 4.5 0.3
Knicks (5-3)
Pos. Player Ht. Pts. Reb Ast.
G Jamal Crawford 6-5 21.0 1.3 4.1
G Chris Duhon 6-1 8.4 3.6 6.8
F Zach Randolph 6-9 19.0 11.5 1.5
F Quentin Richardson 6-6 9.4 5.1 1.5
C David Lee 6-9 10.3 6.1 1.5

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