Oklahoma City Thunder: Why the Thunder's next two games could feel like a track meet

A back-to-back against the high-octane Los Angeles Clippers and Golden State Warriors promises to offer plenty of fast-paced and potentially high-scoring basketball.
by Darnell Mayberry Published: November 12, 2013
Advertisement
;

— On your mark … get set … go!

The next two games for the Oklahoma City Thunder could look and feel like the NBA's version of a track meet.

A back-to-back against the high-octane Los Angeles Clippers and Golden State Warriors promises to offer plenty of fast-paced and potentially high-scoring basketball.

The Clippers rank seventh in pace, using 100.6 possessions per game, while the Warriors rank second at 103.

For most teams, it would be a brutal, if not insurmountable, two-game road test.

And while this California two-step undoubtedly will challenge the Thunder, there might not be a team in the NBA better equipped to survive a track meet.

That's because the Thunder has fielded the most athletic roster in the franchise's Oklahoma City era, and perhaps the most impressive in the league today.

From the point guard position down the line, the Thunder possesses size and speed and length like never before. It's happened slowly and quietly, as OKC has used each of the past three drafts to accumulate promising athletes who suddenly are transforming into productive players.

Steven Adams, in six games, has shown a skill set that former centers Robert Swift, Nazr Mohammed and Cole Aldrich never did.

Jeremy Lamb has flashed athleticism that former guards Daequan Cook and Kevin Martin could only dream of.

Perry Jones III has added versatility that the Thunder probably never thought possible when Joe Smith, Chris Wilcox, D.J. White and Malik Rose manned the position.

And Reggie Jackson has made the point guard spot more explosive than Eric Maynor ever could.

Add the abilities of Russell Westbrook, Thabo Sefolosha, Kevin Durant and Serge Ibaka to that mix and you'll understand why the Thunder is tailor-made for a track meet.

That's eight of the team's 14 players, and all eight have been in the rotation through the first six games. Rookie guard Andre Roberson, another rangy athlete, would bump that total to nine but he can't even get on the floor.


by Darnell Mayberry
OKC Thunder Senior Reporter
Darnell Mayberry grew up in Langston, Okla. and is now in his third stint in the Sooner state. After a year and a half at Bishop McGuinness High, he finished his prep years in Falls Church, Va., before graduating from Norfolk State University in...
+ show more


Trending Now


AROUND THE WEB

  1. 1
    School Required Reading That Will Change Your Life
  2. 2
    OSU basketball: Cowboys release complete schedule
  3. 3
    An Oklahoma program treats juvenile sex offenders as kids, not criminals
  4. 4
    It's a 'Breaking Bad' scavenger hunt
  5. 5
    The perfect way to slice your cheese
+ show more