2. The exclamation point in the previous item was kind of forced. This game was an absolute sleeper. The Cats clearly looked like the better team all night, and did just enough to keep Durant and company at bay. I’m not sure if we should be disappointed that they never were able to definitively put the Thunder away, or impressed that they won in such ho-hum, business-like fashion. A little of both, probably.
3. There are no wildly impressive lines in the box score, and that pretty much jibes with my experience of the game. No one really dominated. That said, Emeka Okafor certainly deserves special mention. He led the Bobcats with 25 points (8-11 FG, 9-12 FT) and 13 rebounds (6 offensive). Very efficient game for Mek tonight. As opposed to Monday night, they weren’t really looking for Mek in the post tonight – most of those shots were putbacks and layups. He was the beneficiary of more than a few of Raymond’s 12 assists.
4. Sean May had what was easily his best game of the year, going 27 minutes and grabbing 11 boards to go with 10 points. Much to my surprise, he can still dunk and did so off a feed from Raymond early in the third. Overall, May is still a quarter-step slow and still has a lot of rust to knock off, but this game was certainly a step in the right direction.
5. J-Rich had a very average game (18 points on 16 shots) but did pass 10,000 career points and got a nice hand from the crowd.
6. Larry Brown has really tightened up his rotation in the past couple of games. Nazr Mohammed and Ryan Hollins were inactive tonight; neither Matt Carroll nor Alexis Ajinca got off the bench again tonight. And Shannon Brown, Adam Morrison and Dwayne Jones only had brief stints in the first half.
6. Other than Kevin Durant (who had 24 effortless points and is clearly a special talent) and Russell Westbrook (who has a lot of potential, but is too raw to contribute in any meaningful way), the Thunder look like a bunch of role players. Mouhamed Saer Sene, Johan Petro and Robert Swift, where are you!?!?!?
7. Next game: Friday night in Milwaukee. Go Cats!