Coach Scott Brooks is confident the Thunder won’t have a letdown tonight against the 7-57 Nets. "Their record is not where they want it to be, but they can win games,” Brooks said. "We have to focus on what we do and do it well and do it with great effort. Our guys have done a great job of that all year.”
Harden UpdateRookie guard James Harden suffered a strained right hamstring when he landed awkwardly in the second quarter of Wednesday night’s win. Harden ran beyond half court after play stopped to try and stretch out the hamstring. Harden played the rest of the game but did not practice Thursday. "It just tightened up on him,” Brooks said. "We don’t know (if he’ll play tonight). We’ll see how he feels after he gets treatment. It’s day to day.”
Alley-oop practiceAfter prohibiting lob plays the first half of the season, Brooks is setting aside practice time for alley-oop slam dunks. "After that Russell (Westbrook) to Jeff Green (botched) attempt I might reconsider letting them do it,” Brooks said, laughing. "You need the opportunity to practice it. We won’t go crazy with that play. But with our shooters coming off a pin-down, it puts a lot of pressure on the defense if we catch the lob.”
White playsForward D.J. White on Wednesday saw his first playing time since Dec. 14, scoring five points in five minutes. Brooks said he analyzes performances even in garbage time situations. "You have to play your minutes hard, whether you get three or four minutes because three or four minutes can turn into five or six and five or six can increase,” Brooks said. "It’s important that D.J. comes in and does the things that we want defensively on the pick-and-rolls, on the post-ups and on the help side.”
Community appearancesKevin Durant will treat single mothers to a shopping spree Saturday at Homeland in north Oklahoma City. Durant is sponsoring Roseland Harley, 25, who has legal custody of six nephews and nieces. Homeland is sponsoring three other families. Also on Saturday, Harden, Maynor and Anderson will make three stops, working with youth — Ralph Ellison Library (teenage guitar hero tournament), Oklahoma City Museum of Art (children meet guest artist Bryan Dahlyang) and the Chesapeake Boathouse (row with junior crew team). Ollie also will serve as an honorary coach at the Thunder Youth Basketball League All-Star games at Woodson Park Gym.