Tag: Detroit Pistons

Oklahoma City Thunder v Golden State Warriors

Kevin Durant held out of practice, timetable for return to Thunder lineup in question


Kevin Durant was practicing with the Thunder, and a return to the lineup seemed somewhat imminent, considering the team’s timetable that was set eight days ago at one-to-two weeks.

But that’s in some jeopardy now, as Durant was held out of practice on Thursday after experiencing some additional soreness.

From Royce Young of Daily Thunder:

“Experiencing a little bit of soreness,” Brooks said. “That’s expected. We have some peaks and valleys, and we always have a cautious approach, so today he didn’t do anything.” …

Asked if he’d classify Durant’s soreness as a setback, or how he’d classify it, Brooks worked around the edges of answering that.

“Just he experienced some soreness,” Brooks said. “I think when you go through rehab, we all know through the rehab process you’re going to have some peaks and valleys, and you just have to adjust accordingly. That’s why he was off today, and he’s definitely not playing tomorrow. That’s all part of the process with his rehab.” …

Again, Durant was given a timetable of “a week or two” eight days ago, which suggested he would be back soon. Him not practicing today is certainly a step in the wrong direction of returning, and it certainly appears he’s not on track.

This is one reason I don’t think it matters at all for the Thunder exactly when Durant returns, or whether he does at all this season.

Oklahoma City is battling just to make the playoffs as an eight-seed, and if the team achieves its goal, the reward is a first round date with the Warriors — a team that’s been a cohesive unit since the season began, and has looked like world-beaters more nights than they haven’t.

The Thunder, meanwhile, are cobbling together lineups and barely hanging on. They made a midseason trade to send Reggie Jackson packing, and brought in both Dion Waiters and Enes Kanter as a way to fortify the roster. Those moves have worked to varying degrees, but what’s important is just how disjointed the team has been for the bulk of the second half of the season.

Even if Durant comes back and is 100 percent, he still has to find a way to coexist with Russell Westbrook — who’s been playing fantastically, but also has been using a ton of the Thunder’s offensive possessions.

There will be an adjustment period, and should the Thunder be fortunate enough to figure things out in time to string together some regular season wins and sneak into the playoffs, there’s absolutely no chance they beat the Warriors four times in a seven game series.

Best wishes and godspeed to Durant on his overall health and return to the lineup. I just don’t see it making one bit of difference for the Thunder’s chances this season.

Report: Warriors ‘going to match whatever’ offer Draymond Green receives as restricted free agent

draymond green

Draymond Green has been an incredible two-way player for the Warriors, with his contributions on the defensive end of the floor speaking volumes in terms of the impact he’s had for his team this season.

Golden State leads the league in defensive efficiency, and the only Warriors player that affects his team’s level of production more than Green is Stephen Curry. With Green out of the lineup, Golden State’s net rating drops 13.4 points per 100 possessions.

Green is going to draw significant attention on the free agent market this summer, but with his restricted status, the Warriors can match any offer he receives. And that’s the plan at the moment, according to at least one well-connected source.

From Diamond Leung of Bay Area News Group:

Mychal Thompson: Draymond worth $15 mil/yr. “I’ve talked to some ppl in GSW org. They said they’re going to match whatever..Doesn’t matter.”

Mychal, of course, is the father of Klay Thompson.

The $15 million number comes from what a max contract would start at for Green, whether it comes from the Warriors or someone else. Green has been linked to the Pistons as a potential destination in free agency, but the fact that he’s restricted can complicate that process for other teams somewhat significantly.

With free agency in the NBA often times being a frenzy, teams are reluctant to sign players to an offer sheet, because it ties up their cap space for three days as the team with the player’s rights contemplates whether or not to match.

It’s smart for the Warriors to put it out there that they will in fact match any offer Green receives (whether it’s true or it isn’t) because it makes it less appealing for another team to sign him, and more difficult for Green to obtain an offer above what Golden State may be willing to give. We saw this play out with both Eric Bledsoe and Greg Monroe last summer; it ended up working out for Bledsoe, but Monroe was forced to sign a one-year qualifying offer after being unable to secure one in the range he desired.

The Warriors may very well offer Green a full five-year max deal, because once the salary cap spikes the following summer, max contracts will similarly increase — and Green’s deal may, at that point, seem like a bargain by comparison.

But either way, letting it be known that they’ll match a max-level offer sheet is how the game is played.

MORE: CSN Bay Area subscriber? Watch Warriors-Hawks Wednesday at 10:30 p.m. ET

Andre Drummond converts reverse alley-oop in win over Grizzlies (VIDEO)

Andre Drummond

The Pistons snapped a 10-game losing streak with a win over the Pistons on Tuesday, and Andre Drummond’s play was a big reason why.

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Sure, Reggie Jackson’s 20 assists were nice, too. But Drummond was big on both ends of the floor, and ended up with 16 points, 16 rebounds and five blocked shots against a formidable front line that features Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol.

MORE: CSN Philly subscriber? Watch Pistons-Sixers Wednesday at 7:00 p.m. ET