Thunder notebook: Thunder has been struck in first three games playing catch-up
Thunder has been stuck in first three games playing catch-up
In the 144 minutes played the first three games, the Thunder has owned a lead for only 10 minutes. In Sunday night’s 88-85 win over Minnesota, Oklahoma City scored only four points the final six minutes but still won.
"I don’t know about anybody else, but I like playing in front,” joked Desmond Mason. "When you get a team down you keep them down, feed off the crowd, feed off each other. We can’t play that see-saw battle all season long where if you get someone down you let them back in the game because you’ll lose a lot of those games.
"As we move forward if we get leads we need to step on people and make sure we finish them off, let them know they don’t have a chance in this building once we get ahead.”
Former Cowboy Lucas waived
The Thunder waived former Oklahoma State guard John Lucas III. Lucas averaged 5.0 points and 2.7 assists in three preseason games but was inactive for all three regular-season games.
The roster has 14 players. Teams are allowed 15. General manager Sam Presti did not indicate whether the team plans to add another player. Only 13 players are available. Rookie forward D.J. White will be sidelined four to six months with a jaw injury.
Veteran forward Chris Wilcox’s nickname is Weezy. It’s a nickname he’s had for more than a decade because one of his high school friends also was named Chris. "Now that’s all everyone knows me by,” Wilcox said. "When I come down the court even coaches on the other bench will yell, ‘You’ve got Weezy.’ ”
Coach Westhead has high praise for Oklahoma City fans
Thunder assistant coach Paul Westhead heard about Oklahoma City fans but is experiencing it for the first time. Westhead was coaching in the WNBA the two seasons the Hornets played in the Ford Center.
"The crowds have been unbelievable,” Westhead said. "It’s almost like game five of a playoff series. This town has shown a commitment to NBA basketball even beyond my initial expectations.”
BY MIKE BALDWIN