Sebastian Telfair

Oklahoma City waives Sebastian Telfair


The NBA granted Oklahoma City a hardship exception to add a 16th player to the roster while Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant were out. But they are about to be back and that exception is about to expire.

So on Wednesday night the Thunder waived guard Sebastian Telfair, the team announced. This brings the Thunder roster down to 15.

With the guards depleted in OKC Tefair was averaging almost 21 minutes a game for the Thunder and didn’t play poorly, averaging 8.6 points a game (although on 36.4 percent shooting).

That means a few things. First is that they will keep Ish Smith on the roster over Telfair. Once Westbrook returns Smith will be the third point guard and he’s not going to see much court time, but the Thunder like him better in that role than Telfair.

Second, Westbrook and Durant are almost back. That’s something to be thankful for.

Thunder sign Ish Smith as 16th player


The list of injured Thunder players is longer than the list of healthy Thunder players.


  • Kevin Durant
  • Russell Westbrook
  • Jeremy Lamb
  • Perry Jones
  • Anthony Morrow
  • Andre Roberson
  • Mitch McGary
  • Grant Jerrett


  • Serge Ibaka
  • Steven Adams
  • Kendrick Perkins
  • Nick Collison
  • Sebastian Telfair
  • Lance Thomas
  • Reggie Jackson

That’s generously counting Jackson – who was pretty beaten up in Oklahoma City’s last game – as healthy, though Lamb could make his season debut tonight.

The NBA’s standard roster maximum is 15 players, but the Thunder are so hampered by injury, the NBA is allowing them to add a 16th. It’ll be Ish Smith, who worked out for the team earlier this week.

Thunder release:

The Oklahoma City Thunder has signed free agent guard Ish Smith to a contract pursuant to the NBA’s hardship rule, it was announced today by Executive Vice President and General Manager Sam Presti.

Smith, a speedy point guard, provides depth behind Jackson and Telfair. Smith will allow Jackson to spend more time off the ball, where Jackson can provide a much-needed scoring punch with Durant and Westbrook out.

No, Smith won’t solve Oklahoma City’s issues. Only time for everyone – or at least Durant and Westbrook – to heal will do that. But Smith helps just a little, and the Thunder need every win they can get to remain in playoff contention in the loaded West.

Thunder, with Perry Jones injured now too, running out of players


Reggie Jackson intentionally fouled to stop the game, staggered to the bench and plopped himself down between Kevin Durant (in oversized cast on his right foot) and Anthony Morrow (sprained left knee), a couple players in street clothes. Jackson clutched his knee in obvious pain.

At that point the Thunder were down to six healthy players. That’s also how they finished Tuesday’s loss to the Raptors.

Jackson – who began the season injured and favored his wrist before hurting his knee – later returned, but Perry Jones did not, and Sebastian Telfair got ejected.

Jones, starting for Durant, left the game with a knee contusion and the arena with a limp:

Jones’ injury seams like a day-to-day situation, but Oklahoma City can’t afford any more setbacks. Jones joins Durant, Morrow, Russell Westbrook, Jeremy Lamb, Mitch McGary, Grant Jerrett and Andre Roberson (who’d started until Tuesday) among sidelined Thunder.

After Jackson returned, Sebastian Telfair was ejected for a flagrant foul. So, Oklahoma City finished the game with just six players – Jackson, Sere Ibaka, Steven Adams, Lance Thomas, Nick Collison and Kendrick Perkins.

The CBA stipulates teams have at least eight players on the bench, so the Thunder have some things to figure out before they host the Grizzlies on Friday.

Help could be on the way, though.

Better injury fortune? That remains elusive.

Reggie Jackson will play in first game of year for Thunder Monday night


Among the plethora of injuries that have the Thunder off to a 1-2 start this year, there was Reggie Jackson’s wrist. He injured it in a preseason game against Dallas after a collision with Al-Farouq Aminu.

He’s back as of Monday.

Jackson will play his first game of the season when the Thunder take on the Nets Monday, reports Darnell Mayberry of the Oklahoman.

He will start at the point and this sends Sebastian Telfair to the bench.

Even before Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook went down Jackson was going to be a big part of the Thunders’ plans for the season. Long term, they are counting on him to become a third wing scoring threat for them — and if he does he’s really going to get paid next summer as a free agent, he wants to start somewhere.

In the short term he gets to prove he can start and as he does he can help the Thunder tread water until their stars return. He’s going to be in the spotlight (and might really help a few fantasy teams in the next few weeks).

Thursday night NBA Winners/Losers: The injury gods show Thunder no mercy


Every night the NBA can be a cold hard reality — there are winners, there are losers. It’s the nature of the game. We know you are busy and can’t keep up with every game, so we’re here to bring you the best and worst of the NBA each week night. Here’s what you missed while watching Kendrick Lamar perform before the Cavs game…

source:  Russell Westbrook and Oklahoma City Thunder. I don’t know what the Thunder players did in their past lives to bring this kind of injury Karma with them this season, but it must have been nasty. They key for the Thunder is they are now 0-2 on the young season and the next month or so is going to be rough. Russell Westbrook hurt his right hand in the second quarter, going up for a rebound he seemed to catch his hand in the jersey of Kendrick Perkins (or somehow make contact) and after that he took himself out of the game not to return. Not sure how long he’ll be out but with Kevin Durant, Reggie Jackson, Jeremy Lamb among others the Thunder are getting short of bodies. Bottom line if you have to play Sebastian Telfair 37 minutes you are in trouble in the NBA (although to their credit the Thunder fought hard to stay in it and were not blown out).

source:  The New York Knicks. I’ll take some crow. Thursday afternoon I wrote the Knicks were the sacrificial lamb to the LeBron James homecoming show. New York was simply a role player. Except they refused to be. Carmelo Anthony led the way with an efficient night on the second game of a back-to-back — 26 points with a true shooting percentage of 62 percent (he was 7-of-10 on uncontested looks, that he got 10 clean shots speaks to the Cavs defense), plus ‘Melo dished out 6 assists, and he hit the dagger with LeBron James in his face. They moved the ball, with assists on 3o of their 37 buckets. The Knicks as a team had an offensive rating of 110.6 on the night. Give credit where it’s due, the Knicks refused to play the role of patsy and picked up a nice win.

source:  LeBron James. He was tight. He clearly felt the expectations and the hype in Cleveland — they had street parties going on in downtown, there were concerts, the stars were out, Nike had a new ad, and the city was there for a coronation. LeBron clearly felt the weight of all of it. He was 5-of-15 shooting, he had four assists and eight turnovers. Look at this shot chart:


It doesn’t mean anything going forward. He’s still the best player on the planet, the Cavaliers are still title contenders. But for one night, a big night, LeBron simply was not good.

source:  City of Cleveland. Sure, the Cavaliers lost when nobody expected them to. So what? Good teams lose to bad teams (remember the second game of last season the Heat lost to the 76ers). The fact of the matter is Cleveland is back — on the court and off. Thursday was more than a celebration of LeBron, it was a celebration of home. Of Cleveland. LeBron returned and brought energy and excitement with him. This is going to be a great season and this one game means nothing in the grand scheme of things.

source:  John Wall, Washington Wizards. While everyone else was watching Cleveland, Wall went out and put up elite point guard numbers — 30 points on 21 shots, with 11 of those points coming in a strong third quarter for Washington (one where Wall was active on defense and took a charge). Down the stretch is was Wall and Paul Pierce making plays to get Washington another win. If Wall keeps playing like this they will pick up a lot of them.