If you’re having a bad day just tell yourself “I could be a fan of the Oklahoma City Thunder”, as things went from bad to worse on Thursday night as Russell Westbrook is now out 4-6 weeks with a fracture in his shooting hand.
This is a serious blow to the Thunder as they are already without the services of Kevin Durant, Reggie Jackson, and Anthony Morrow.
The loss of Westbrook creates a giant void at the point guard position, which will now be manned by Sebastian Telfair, but that might not equate to wins, because let’s face it Telfair isn’t Westbrook.
The loss of Westbrook means your going to need to replace at least 25 points a night and 7 assists, something which Telfair is simply not going to do.
This team needs Reggie Jackson to return from his ankle injury immediately, as that might be their only chance at having an effective playmaker on the roster. Jackson is great at getting to the basket, and posses a quality shot.
However, Jackson isn’t going to score Westbrook or Durant-type numbers.
For the Thunder to have any shot at staying alive in the loaded Western Conference, they will need to see bigger contributions from Perry Jones. Jones, a former star at Baylor, had somewhat of a breakout game on Thursday against the Los Angeles Clippers scoring 32 points and grabbing 7 rebounds.
Jones will be the team’s main scorer with both Durant and Westbrook out, and if last night is any indication, he won’t have any problem adjusting to the role. The team also has to see exceptional play for Serge Ibaka. A bigger role will be put on him, and Steven Adams, to protect the paint and prevent opponents from scoring down low.
Ibaka will need to stretch the floor and use his solid jump shot and keep the defense guessing. It won’t be an easy road for the Thunder, but it can be done, and who knows maybe Perry Jones can develop in the process.
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