Thunder Game 5 report card: B team gets an ‘A'; OKC adjusts slowly

By Berry Tramel Published: May 12, 2011
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B team: A. Hard to say anything bad about a bench that outscored Memphis' bench 53-27, Memphis' starters 53-45 and the Thunder starters 53-46. When Scotty Brooks played the five reserves together to open the second quarter, they held the game even for 5:14 before reinforcements arrived. Then when they started the fourth quarter, they blew open the game, to the point Memphis surrendered.

Kevin Durant's post-up game: A. Durant didn't post up much, but when he did, he was effective, in the first half against Sam Young and in the second half against Shane Battier. It's a good tonic for the perimeter defense the Grizzlies have been playing on Durant.

Kendrick Perkins' post-up game: D. Perkins' defense is invaluable, his attitude is contagious and his rebounding is underrated. But we've seen about enough of Perkins on the block with the ball. That's not working.

Front row east: B. Fans in the high-dollar seats were into the game; they returned from the lounges quickly after halftime. But former OSU Cowboy Joe Adkins, in his customary front-row seat, declined to wear the white T-shirt, sticking with his plaid button-up. Come on, Joe, be a sport.

Front row west: A. Who knows what kind of locker-room presence Nate Robinson provides, but give the little guy this. He rivals Rumble for the Thunder's biggest cheerleader. And early in the game, when the Thunder failed to score the first four minutes, Robinson gave talkative Grizzly Tony Allen an earful, a sign that the Thunder bench had fire from the start.

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