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Kendrick Perkins brings big, bad screens to Thunder offense

Apr 11, 2011, 12:12 PM EDT

Oklahoma City Thunder v Phoenix Suns Getty Images

Ron Artest hounds Kevin Durant like few defenders in the league. Durant’s preferred catch-and-shoot is often taken away and Durant has to put the ball on the floor more (which he did well getting into the lane Sunday in the Thunder’s win).

But Durant got some better looks Sunday because of the offensive contributions of Kendrick Perkins. Yes. Perkins.

Because Perkins sets a bigger, better screen than anyone else on the Thunder.

“He’s strong, a wide base,” Durant told PBT after the game. “He set one on Artest and I seen Artest grimace a little bit, and that’s the first time I’ve seen that from him. That was a great screen and he’s been setting those ever since he’s been here to get me a lot of open looks, and it’s also been getting my teammates open looks. If I get the basketball on a screen-and-roll he opens it up for everybody.

“He’s helping us out in a lot of different ways you don’t see in the stat sheet.

Thunder coach Scott Brooks echoed that, saying that the Thunder get some better looks with Perkins on the floor because of his screens and having players like Durant and Russell Westbrook that don’t need much space to create quality shots.

When the Thunder got Perkins it was to protect the rim and defend, to rebound, to scowl and intimidate. Or as Perkins said after the Lakers win, they told him to be himself. And that has worked — the Thunder are still a young and fun locker room, but with a year of playoff experience and Perkins, the vibe now is decidedly more serious than a year ago. All the Thunder are trying out some scowls. Well, almost.

“My scowl? I leave that up to him,” Durant said.

Any offense the Thunder got from Perkins was considered a bonus. Perkins is not that dangerous on the roll part of the pick-and-roll, and that could be an issue down the line. Against a team like the Lakers it should allow Andrew Bynum to freelance more as a help defender. But if the pick itself creates enough space for Durant and Westbrook to do their thing, that may not matter.

Either way, just don’t say Perkins doesn’t bring anything to the Thunder’s offense.

  1. therookie773 - Apr 11, 2011 at 12:39 PM

    Doc rivers would be pissed reading this

  2. Kansachusetts - Apr 11, 2011 at 1:20 PM

    I’d love to have been a fly on the wall when Danny Ainge told Doc about the trade.

    • therookie773 - Apr 11, 2011 at 2:01 PM

      Lol, I don’t think I understand this expression, so someone enlighten me but the imagery itself is hilarious.

      • dgforreal - Apr 11, 2011 at 4:02 PM

        Fancy way of saying he wishes he was in the room.

  3. j0esixpack - Apr 11, 2011 at 2:59 PM

    Perk set a lot of screens for the Celtics too… But half the time it was an offensive foul. I’d guess the refs go a bit easier on the Thunder in that department.

  4. purdueman - Apr 11, 2011 at 4:47 PM

    I can’t wait in the hopes of seeing the Lakers get matched up in the playoffs against the Thunder. Perkins will crush Gasol like an annoying little bug!!!

    • rapmusicmademedoit - Apr 13, 2011 at 6:50 PM

      ahhhhhhhhh, but you forget, Mamba will not let anyone stand in his way, Kobe will beat them in 6-7 games,Mamba is a hall of famer, Perkins is not.

      • rapmusicmademedoit - Apr 13, 2011 at 6:53 PM

        and who will guard Big O,I mention this because all you referenced was shutting down the Spainiard, as if he is the only option.

      • purdueman - Apr 13, 2011 at 7:26 PM

        Ya, I vividly remember the year that Laker Fans all said that Robert Horry was their “can’t miss secret weapon too”, and then when it came to win or go home and Horry got the final Laker shot? It went “CLANK!” and the Lakers were done for the season.

        What disappointed me about that game though was that none of the local LA papers (i.e., The Press-Telegraph, Register, Times or Daily News), used my suggested headline for the next days morning’s paper: “HORRY-BLE!!!”.

        No one here is touting Perkins up as being a Hall of Famer now or in the future, but that’s irrelevant rapmusic, because getting voted into the HOF is an INDIVIDUAL award and we’re talking here about TEAM matchups.

      • purdueman - Apr 13, 2011 at 7:54 PM

        I hate it when perceived “macho” nicknames are either hung on athletes and/or self promoted by them and/or their agents.

        Hard to argue though that Kobe is representative of a Black Mamba; the poor girl who he jumped in Colorado I’m sure would readily agree that he’s a real dangerous black snake in the grass all right!

        Then we have “Tiger” Woods; yes, I’m sure that all of the sleaze and porn stars he slept with probably did think he was a Tiger at the time, what with the way he stuffed their pockets with pictures of dead Presidents and all. Go get ’em, Tiger!

        Of course, Jack “The Assassin” Tatum lived up to his nickname too, by putting Darryl Stingley in a wheelchair for the rest of his life and taking 15-20 years off his life as well by going over and above to “assassinate” him coming over the middle unprotected going after a catch. Why just break up the play when you can paralyze your opponent at the same time?

        Non-macho nicknames though can be a lot of fun, like Charles “The Round Mound of Rebound” Barkley, or Harry “The Hat” Walker (baseball). Just don’t see the need though to promote violent nicknames; isn’t our society already violent enough without adversely influencing children who (like it or not), look up to these athletes?

    • rapmusicmademedoit - Apr 13, 2011 at 6:54 PM

      can’t wait too!!!!!!!!!!!

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