Thunder-Spurs Remote Patrol: TNT crew says series not over, recalls 2012

Studio analysts Kenny Smith, Charles Barkley and Shaquille O’Neal noted the Thunder must make changes in the starting lineup to make a run at the Spurs when the series resumes Sunday night at Chesapeake Energy Arena.
by Mel Bracht Published: May 22, 2014

Earlier in the game, noted the Thunder’s porous interior defense was making Ibaka look good.

“The Thunder defense is making Serge Ibaka look like Hakeem Olajuwon and Bill Russell all wrapped in one.”

Ibaka’s absence contributed to the ugly blowout.

“Gentlemen,” Miller said to fellow announcers Marv Albert and Steve Kerr, “this is an old-fashioned, take- you- to-the- woodshed beatdown by the San Antonio Spurs.”

It was so lopsided he joked that he should have stayed home and watched the game.

“I could have Skyped my comments from Malibu (Calif.) It would have been the same thing,” Miller said.

However, noting the Thunder had come back from the 2-0 deficit in 2012, he said the series wasn’t over.

“I throw caution to the wind. We’ve seen this movie before.”

SHORT TAKES

•On the Fox Sports Oklahoma postgame show, TV voice Brian Davis noted the Thunder’s poor shot selection. “I would suggest that a lot of the problems started at the offensive end with a significant loss of discipline.” Analyst Nancy Lieberman said, “The Thunder must do it with defense and it starts with the point attack with Tony Parker.”

•Miller was irritated that game officials checked the monitor to see if Perkins’ foul on Tiago Splitter was a flagrant foul. “This is just being physical. That’s just a good hard foul. Play on.”

•Kerr on Westbrook: He’s just fun to watch. You never know what you’re going to get. It’s so spectacular...He’s just a force of nature.”

•After Danny Green hit a 3-pointer to take a 55-44 lead, Kerr noted the Thunder’s “dilemma.” “You’re trying desperately to keep San Antonio out of the paint. If you go to help too much, you’re going to give up the 3s.”

•Kerr noted the “crux” of the series was the Thunder had too many “one-way defenders” who are offensive liabilities.

•At halftime, Barkley lamented the Thunder’s poor shooting as an acid rock group blasted away in the background. “They take some of the worst jump shots, real quick jumpers.”

He ripped Durant and Westbrook for failing to get more contribution out of their teammates. “They have to learn to make the players around them better.”


by Mel Bracht
Copy Editor, Sports Media
Mel Bracht is a copy editor on the presentation desk and also covers sports media. A 1978 graduate of Indiana University, Bracht has been a print journalist for 34 years. He started his career as sports editor of the Rensselaer (Ind.) Republican...
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