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TNT remarks from Thunder season finale

John Rohde Modified: May 17, 2013 at 1:40 pm •  Published: May 17, 2013


Comments from the TNT crew that covered Game 5 of the Thunder’s second-round playoff series against Memphis on Wednesday night at Chesapeake Energy Arena:

Mike Fratello on Grizzlies point guard Mike Conley: “He is sneaky-fast. He can change direction and turn the corner, he can stay with the ball with either hand or turn it straight on. He’s got the great ability to finish with both hands…his game has gone up each year that he’s been in the NBA. He’s developed into a much more confident offensive player.”

Fratello on Thunder forward Kevin Durant’s ability to make difficult shots: “Who makes more difficult shots than [Durant]? He comes down and elevates over the top of defenders that are right there and still has the ability to knock them down.”

Charles Barkley on Thunder coach Scott Brooks’ plans for Game 5: “Scott Brooks has the worst game plan by going to Kevin Durant every single time with three guys hanging on him. It’s a horrible game plan.”

Barkley on the Grizzlies: “Not only are they going to win their series tonight, they’re going to The Finals.”

Fratello on what the addition of veteran forward Tayshaun Prince has meant to the Grizzlies: “Prince coming in doesn’t command as many shot attempts. He’s a defensive guy who understands his role. He’s been on a championship team before so coming in, he understood that [Memphis] is built around the two big guys [Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol] … if he does what he’s comfortable doing and fills his role, this team can go far.”

Fratello on Grizzlies guard Tony Allen’s defense: “You always have to fight against Tony Allen. No easy shots.”

(To sideline reporter Marty Snider) Conley on the Grizzlies: “All heart…we just kept it going through all the adversity. We’ve gone through the ups and downs. It was just hard work.”

Barkley on Brooks’ game plan with Durant: “Scott Brooks did [Durant] a disservice making him go one-on-five all night.”

Barkley on Durant: “He was struggling and trying too hard. He’s been under so much stress without [an injured] Russell Westbrook, but they weren’t going to win this series anyway. He’s going to get some blame but he doesn’t deserve it. It’s hard to be a one-man wrecking crew every single night.”

Barkley on the Grizzlies: “They are going to The Finals…they’ve got it all. They’ve got two big guys [Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol]. Mike Conley is the most underrated point guard in the NBA. Tony Allen is a terrific defender. The key is Tayshaun Prince and he has played fantastic. Their front line is going to be tough for anyone to deal with.”

Kenny Smith on Houston Rockets guard James Harden: “I don’t know if anyone knew that James Harden is as good as he is because I don’t think he’s ever had that responsibility [to be a team leader] in his life. When he was given that responsibility, he became a great player.”

Barkley on what changes the Bulls need to make in the off-season: “They need another big guy. I like their perimeter game. They’ll obviously get Derrick Rose back. But they need one more big man in order to contend.”



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