What’s Taking Oklahoma City Thunder so Long to Turn Things Around?

January 13th, 2015 by Stephen Babb Leave a reply »

After a November in which reigning MVP Kevin Durant and star sidekick Russell Westbrook were sidelined by injuries, the once-dominant Oklahoma City Thunder are 18-19 and—like the New Orleans Pelicans—still 2.5 games behind the No. 8-seeded Phoenix Suns.

In short, things haven't exactly gone according to plan.

Head coach Scott Brooks' club ranks 22nd in offensive efficiency, posting 101.1 points per 100 possessions according to Hollinger Team Stats. Were it not for a top-10 defense, OKC's plight would be even worse. But without its superstar talent in top form, this club is all too mortal.

There's probably a simple enough explanation for the protracted struggles. After his season debut was delayed until Dec. 2 on account of a fractured foot, Durant missed another six games last month due to a sprained ankle. In total, the Thunder are 8-15 without the 26-year-old and 4-10 when he and Westbrook were both out.

Given the production for which these two account, that's not especially surprising.

The bigger concern is that Oklahoma City hasn't completely turned the corner even when ...

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