Thunder has to set the table for Kevin Martin
OKC's new sixth man thrives when he's set up by Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook. As evidence, Martin scored 27 points against the Hornets.
Videoview all videos
Photoview all photos
NewsOK Related Articles
Thunder vs. Golden State
When: 6 p.m. Sunday
Where: Chesapeake Energy Arena
TV: Fox Sports Oklahoma (Cox 37/HD 722, DirecTV 679, Dish 416, U-Verse 754/HD 1754)
Radio: WWLS-FM 98.1, WWLS-AM 640
Three things to know
* The Thunder went 3-0 against the Warriors last season and has won six straight overall against them.
* Golden State is coming off a 106-98 victory at Minnesota, where it outscored Wolves 58-22 in the paint.
* This is OKC's third straight Sunday home game. The Thunder has previously lost to Atlanta and beat Cleveland.
With the Thunder, a staggering 66 percent of Martin's scores have been assisted, by far a career high, according to hoopdata.com. You won't find better evidence of how the Thunder needs to emphasize feeding Martin, and how Martin, at this point in his career, works best when the table is set for him.
“I cannot demand the ball because I'm not going to be a guy where I'm taking horrible shots and killing our offense,” Martin said. “Everybody else has to play their part because I'm not going to be a guy that brings the ball down every time and try to create something. So with me on the court, a lot of it is going to be in the point guard's hands as well, actually being a point guard.”
Hours after sitting in that cushy courtside seat Friday morning — almost anxiously awaiting tip-off to see whether Wednesday was indeed an anomaly — Martin proved what a difference passing can make. He scored 27 points, including 22 in the first half, in a 15-point win over the Hornets. After taking just four shots two nights earlier, Martin needed just five minutes to launch four shots Friday. In six fewer minutes, Martin managed to hoist 13 more shots, ultimately making nine of his 17 attempts.
It was no surprise that 20 of his 27 points came off assists.
The Thunder's ball movement at New Orleans was the best it has been all year, as evidenced by OKC dishing a season-high 31 assists. The rapid passing forced the defense to rotate and often left Martin all alone for uncontested 3-pointers. He made 6 of 11 from downtown, finishing one shy of tying his career high in made 3s.
“It's a fun game when basketball is played that way,” Martin said. “We were up 30 at halftime, and that was the big thing. They couldn't stop our ball movement and everybody was unselfish and we got great results.”
Sports Photo Galleriesview all
VIDEOS FROM NBA TV
Buy Tickets View all
- 36528Oklahoma weather: Crews work to clear storm damage in Oklahoma City as the state braces for severe weather Sunday.
- 32802Oklahoma tornadoes: 'It took it all'
- 32453Oklahoma Severe Storm Updates
- 8406Wild hogs continue to be a growing menace across Oklahoma
- 5462OKC Thunder GM Sam Presti won't amnesty Kendrick Perkins
- 3890Oklahoma City Thunder: What could Serge Ibaka learn from Hakeem Olajuwon?
- 3494College football: Coaches, athletes weigh in on NCAA's suspended recruiting proposals