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What others are saying about the Oklahoma City Thunder defense

By Darnell Mayberry, Staff Writer, Modified: January 16, 2011 at 11:15 pm •  Published: January 16, 2011

"They stink defensively. (Kevin Durant) got mad at me a couple of weeks ago (for saying this). They don't play any defense and they don't rebound the ball. That's why they are not a legit contender. Until they learn to play defense and rebound the ball, they are just in the way." – Charles Barkley (TNT analyst)

"There were fears about this heading into 2010-11. Former assistant coach Ron Adams put together several masterful defensive seasons in Chicago as the team's assistant under (mainly) Scott Skiles, and he left the Thunder after improving the Thunder's defense last season to return to the City That Works. Even if the ship rights itself and improves defensively, this cannot be a coincidence." – Kelly Dwyer (Yahoo! Sports)

"They have been victimized by dribble penetration that has led to defensive breakdowns. The team has come up with key stops late in games … but (hasn't) been able to maintain that defensive intensity for entire games." – Chris Mannix (

"For all the talk about the Thunder's regression on D, who looks more stable in the Northwest Division than Durant, Westbrook and Co.?" – Marc Stein (ESPN)

"Since the Thunder did not lose any rotation players this past offseason, it is interesting to see such a drop, and this leads to the question, 'Is the Thunder's team defense worse, or are the individuals playing worse?' " – Sebastian Pruiti (Basketball Prospectus)

"He's playing big-time basketball. He's doing some wonderful things. He's also playing defense. He's not just scoring." – San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich on Russell Westbrook


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