For the second straight year, the Oklahoma City Thunder’s playoff push has been derailed by a season-ending injury. Last year it was All-Star guard Russell Westbrook, who went down in the first round with a knee injury as a result of a collision with Houston guard Patrick Beverley. This year it is forward Serge Ibaka, who suffered a left calf injury in the third quarter of Thursday’s clincher over the Los Angeles Clippers. Ibaka underwent an MRI on Friday that confirmed a left
Phil Jackson won’t be awful as president of the New York Knicks. He certainly won’t be as bad as Isiah Thomas was in running the club. And he will almost certainly be better than David Kahn, Bryan Colangelo, Joe Dumars, Otis Smith and Geoff Petrie have been in recent years. But Phil Jackson isn’t Isiah Thomas, or David Kahn, or Bryan Colangelo. He’s Phil Jackson, with a reputation of all things basketball that he touches turning to gold. And that’s exactly what
I’m kinda high on what the Charlotte Bobcats did with Ben Gordon. The Bobcats waived Gordon on Sunday, preventing him from appearing in the postseason should he sign with another team. While they may have alienated his agent – not a trifle thing in the business world of the NBA – two things should be pointed out. 1. When teams waive or buy out players at this time of the season, they are essentially establishing a price they are willing to pay
Previously indestructible Russell Westbrook had another arthroscopic procedure on his right knee Friday – his third surgery in the last eight months – and is out until after the All-Star break. The Thunder made the announcement in a press release that included a quote from GM Sam Presti. “Russell has been playing pain free, but recently had experienced increased swelling,” Presti said.
We’re entering Year Six of Thundermania here in Oklahoma City, and the level of expectation surrounding the team is as high as it has ever been. But with that expectation comes a certain degree of uncertainty. After all the years of hearing about how the Thunder were an organization based around a true “team” concept, fans are now coming to accept that the Thunder are a two-headed horse. There’s simply no way that this team could hoist a championship banner without a
There is a sneaky, devious way that the Los Angeles Lakers can re-sign Dwight Howard, continue to pay Kobe Bryant the NBA’s highest salary and create even more cap room for this summer and next summer. Use the amnesty provision on Bryant. Yes, Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak said in the days after Bryant tore his Achilles tendon that using the one-time provision – which 15 teams still have at their disposal – on the face of the franchise was not under consideration.
This summer, when your favorite team’s owner or GM tells you a certain player is financially out of reach, here’s how you know he is lying. His lips are moving. NBA business is booming, folks. And not just for the so-called big markets. Take a quick look at the conference finals, which feature four teams from middle to small markets collecting millions for every home playoff game. Take a look at the Sacramento Kings, who were just sold for a record $525 million
Words to live by: If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Surely Sam Presti and Clay Bennett of the Oklahoma City Thunder have heard that expression, as both are smart, successful businessmen with good educational backgrounds, although they are a generation apart in age. Presti is the wise child who built the Oklahoma City Thunder from scratch, taking over at age 30 on June 7, 2007, prior to the team’s final season in Seattle, renting a small apartment with his then-girlfriend near