Thunder forward Serge Ibaka has played steady defense much of the season, but he has struggled offensively.
Last season, he averaged 9.9 points, 7.6 rebounds, 2.4 blocks and shot 54.3 percent from the field. This season, he is averaging 6.6 points, 6.4 rebounds, 2.6 blocks and is shooting 48.5 percent.
In Monday night's 99-79 home victory over Detroit, Ibaka might have been more active than he has been all season, which was by design.
Eight hours before tipoff, Brooks mentioned Ibaka needed to be given more opportunities to contribute offensively. Ibaka had the chances and took 10 shots but made only three. He did tie a season high with 10 rebounds and had five blocks for the second straight game.
“He's been really good defensively – rebounding, blocking shots, protecting the paint,” Brooks said of the 22-year-old from the Republic of Congo. “I felt it was my job to get him more involved offensively, and he had good looks. He missed probably four (shots) that were just unlucky. … I have to do a better job of helping facilitate that.”
Reserve forward Nick Collison left in the second quarter against Detroit with a sprained left ankle and did not return, nor did he practice on Tuesday morning.
Brooks said Collision is listed as day-to-day and will be re-evaluated Wednesday morning for the New Orleans game that night.
Following Wednesday night's game against the Hornets, the Thunder plays eight of its next nine games on the road, with the lone home game being Feb. 3 against Memphis.
OKC is at Golden State on Friday, at the Los Angeles Clippers on Monday, at Dallas next Wednesday, home for Memphis, at San Antonio Feb. 4, has back-to-back games at Portland and Golden State on Feb. 6-7 and back-to-back games at Sacramento and Utah on Feb. 9-10.
After the road trip, the Thunder will play six of the next seven games at home, which is followed by All-Star Weekend.
Brooks, on if he's qualified to make a cameo appearance in Durant's movie – “I've been acting for four seasons as a head coach.”