Thunder notebook: A matter of time

By John Rohde, Staff Writer, jrohde@opubco.com Modified: November 6, 2010 at 10:56 pm •  Published: November 6, 2010

Thunder coach Scott Brooks said he doesn't let back-to-back games affect how long he keeps a certain player in the game. During Thursday night's overtime victory at Portland, small forward Kevin Durant played all but 32 seconds while Jeff Green and Russell Westbrook played nearly 46 and 44 minutes, respectively.

"You look at each game and you do whatever it takes to put your team in a position to win," Brooks said. "You play your best guys on the floor as many minutes as you can get out of them, and then you go to the next game and do the same thing. Guys have to play well and you want the minutes to be hard.

"This part of the season, back-to-backs are little bit different than back-to-back games in the middle of March. It just depends on how you're playing, how you're feeling. Our guys are well-conditioned. They can handle back-to-back games. I don't look at it, 'I have to rest this guy this many minutes.' Every game is its own game."

Brooks said it helped that Thursday's game was nationally televised on TNT, "Because there are long timeouts. It's a long game and there are a lot of rest periods in between."

GETTING DEFENSIVE

The Thunder ranks dead last in 3-point shooting at an atrocious 19.1 percent, is struggling from the field at 41.3 percent, and Sunday faces one of the league's elite defensive teams in the Boston Celtics.

"Boston is one of the best teams on both ends of the floor," Brooks said. "Their offense is really good. They do a great job of spacing and passing. They've got guys who have played together for a while and they've had a lot of great years in the league. They're hard to score on. We have to play well, and we have to do it for 48 minutes.

"When you're a championship-level team, you have a lot of weapons, and that's what they have. You can't just focus on one guy. You have to focus on all of them. You've got to do your best to make them take tough shots."



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