On the other hand, the team's warts are flat out worrisome.
The Thunder is averaging only 1.5 more assists than turnovers. The 16.7 turnovers per game rank the Thunder 29th in the league and are a staggering 2.3 more than OKC forces. Additionally, only Sacramento has a worse assist-to-turnover rate than the Thunder's 1.09-to-1 ratio. The Thunder also ranks 26th in defensive rebounding, allowing 12.5 offensive boards per game, the fourth most in the league. And teams are shooting 7.6 more shots on average than the Thunder.
“We have yet to put a game of 48 minutes of team ball together,” said Kendrick Perkins. “We got to be able to trust each other offensively and defensively if we're trying to get to where we're going. Otherwise, it's going to be what it's going to be and we're just making it hard on ourselves.”
No one is suggesting the Thunder has a problem sizable enough to even begin looking for the proverbial panic button. Not even close. There are peaks and valleys in every season, and this current stretch very well could be a valley.
Monday's game at Portland is the second of a five-game road trip. The remaining four opponents on this getaway have combined to go 34-16 at home. This brutal portion of the schedule, coupled with the Thunder's ample areas of concern, could only further complicate things.
Still, OKC might be good enough to skate by.
But now is a good time to send a message.