Not that you expected Serge Ibaka to sit out — the league gave him and the Thunder a long break between games — but we thought we’d make it official.
Ibaka participated with the Thunder on Thursday and is a go for Game 3 against Memphis on Saturday, according to the Associated Press. Ibaka tweaked his knee and ankle in Game 2 Saturday and he skipped practice on Thursday to recover.
The Thunder need Ibaka in this series to match up with the dangerous front line of Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol for the Grizzlies. Ibaka did a much better job on Randolph in Game 2, taking away his space, and that was key to a Thunder win. The series stands tied 1-1.
With both starter Omer Asik and backup Alexis Ajinca out injured for the rest of the preseason (and maybe a little longer), the Pelicans are looking for a center to put next to Anthony Davis for a stretch. That could include a handful of regular season games.
The New Orleans Pelicans were set to sign power forward Greg Smith, but sources said Friday night that he failed his physical examination and will not be joining the team.
And so the search goes on.
The problem is, there are not quality big men still out there on the market, there is a limited supply and just about anyone worth having is spoken for. A few with non-guaranteed contracts may be waived as we get closer to the end of training camps, but that is likely a couple of weeks away.
With both Asik and Ajinca expected back in a few weeks, it’s not worth making a trade or some big move to bring in a center, the Pelicans are just going to have to live with what is out there.
Kevin Durant with huge dunk on visiting Fenerbahce Ulker