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Thunder notebook: Crunch time could have been Thabo's time

Coach Scott Brooks chose James Harden for late in-bounds pass — and it ended up costing OKC.
BY JOHN ROHDE, Staff Writer, Published: March 17, 2012


Missing 27 games due to various injuries this season, San Antonio guard Manu Ginobili is still working on his conditioning and the Spurs don't feel he is ready to play back-to-back games.

With a game at Dallas on Saturday night, the Spurs chose to save Ginobili for that contest and rest him against the Thunder on Friday. San Antonio won anyway without Ginobili.


The Thunder hosts Portland at 8:30 p.m. Sunday in a game on ESPN, which begins a demanding stretch of five games Sunday to Sunday. After the Trail Blazers is a game at Utah on Tuesday, home against Blake Griffin and the Los Angeles Clippers on Wednesday, home against Minnesota on Friday and home against Miami and its Big Three on Sunday.


The auction/raffle to benefit Serge Ibaka's native town of Brazzaville in the Republic of Congo raised $16,000 in funds for UNICEF to aid victims.

It included an auction and raffle of Thunder-signed items. San Antonio All-Star guard Tony Parker also donated a jersey for the auction. The jersey Ibaka wore in Friday's game went for $5,200. Those who purchased the item met with Ibaka after the game and had him sign it. 

“The people in my home country need help, and I'm so happy that people here are willing to do this for them,” Ibaka said. “I'm thankful to the organization for the idea to help my home country.”


The Spurs led by as many as 27 in the second quarter, owned 65-48 advantage at halftime and shooting was the key.

San Antonio outshot the Thunder 57.8 percent (26 for 45) to 38.6 percent (17 for 44) from the field and 83.3 percent (5 for 6) to 36.4 percent (4 for 11) from 3-point range in the first two quarters.

The Spurs' margin at intermission would have been even larger had they not shot just 57.1 percent (8 for 14) from the free-throw line.

San Antonio wound up shooting 51.7 percent from the field for the game, and OKC shot 44.3 percent. The Spurs started out 7 for 8 from 3-point range and finished 9 for 19 (47.4 percent). The Thunder 36.0 percent (9 for 25) beyond the arc.


The Thunder assigned forward Ryan Reid to the Tulsa 66ers of the NBA Development League. Reid has played seven games with OKC, averaging 1.6 points in 3.4 minutes. In two previous stints with the 66ers this year, Reid has played 16 games (all starts), averaging 11.5 points, 8.1 rebounds, 1.4 assists and 32.4 minutes. He was in uniform Friday night as the 66ers hosted the Springfield Armor at the Tulsa Convention Center.


Popovich on trading Richard Jefferson for Stephen Jackson before Thursday's trade deadline “Well, I was for it.”

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