Marreese Speights scored a season-high 28 points in Sunday’s game against the Thunder.
What got into the Warriors big man?
I’d chalk it up to a combination of David Lee being injured, Andrew Bogut leaving the game due to injury, Festus Ezeli fouling out and Speights have a real talent at putting the ball in the basket when he gets rolling.
But don’t dismiss the Kendrick Perkins factor.
Speights, via Rusty Simmons of SFGate:
“It’s just that Perk always has something to say,” Speights said. “He thinks he’s a tough guy, but at the end of the day, his game is terrible. He always has something to say to me, every time we play against each other.
“It always gets me going, so: ‘Shout out to Perkins’ for helping me get this game.”
Kendrick Perkins does always have something to say. He’s reportedly gotten into it with Tyson Chandler, Russell Westbrook, LeBron James, Zach Randolph and Darnell Mayberry. To opponents, teammates and writers, Perkins speaks his mind. So, Speights definitely gets the benefit of the doubt on that (though, as a I reporter, I enjoy Perkins’ outspokenness).
But Perkins’ game isn’t terrible – not so far this season, at least.
How did Perkins respond?
Perkins, via Anthony Simmons of The Oklahoman:
“I just don’t understand some guys, especially like a guy his caliber — five or six-year player in the league, you been on six different teams,” Perkins said. “You don’t really have no room to be talking about anyone.”
Speights was drafted by the 76ers, traded to the Grizzlies and traded to the Cavaliers before he signed with Golden State. He just never really endeared himself to his teams, as Byron Scott showed while coaching him in Cleveland.
That was a pretty solid retort by Perkins, but the Thunder center, playing from behind after Speights made the first insult, just couldn’t catch up. On and off the court, score this a win for Speights.
The rematch will come Dec. 18 when the Thunder and Warriors play on TNT.