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Billy Donovan Denies Meeting With Hoosiers About Job

Mar 26, 2017 12:07 PM

Billy Donovan denied a report that he traveled to Bloomington, Indiana to discuss the Indiana University head coaching vacancy.

Indiana has since hired Archie Miller as head coach to replace Tom Crean.

Justin Albers of AlbersAngle.com reported on Friday, citing sources, that Donovan had been in Bloomington that morning.

“Yesterday morning, I was here in practice,” Donovan said. “I was not there. I was here in practice and actually was in a couple meetings, and then went to Russell (Westbrook's) bowling charity last night.”

Donovan was previously asked about the job when it became available in mid-March.

“I love it here,” Donovan said at the time. “I love the guys I work with every day. I love our staff, the organization. As far as I’m concerned, my commitment is totally here and doing the best job I can while I’m here.”

Donovan is in his second season as head coach of the Oklahoma City Thunder after leaving the University of Florida.

Oklahoman

Tags: Oklahoma City Thunder, Indiana Hoosiers, NCAA, NBA, NBA Misc Rumor

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Steve Kerr, Stephen Curry Dispute Report About OKC's Treatment Of Durant

Mar 20, 2017 3:33 PM

Steve Kerr and Stephen Curry disputed a report that the Golden State Warriors were frustrated with how the Oklahoma City Thunder organization handled the return of Kevin Durant last month.

"I don't agree," Kerr said. "[Thunder GM] Sam Presti's a friend of mine. I know [Thunder chairman] Clay Bennett, it's a class organization all the way. So I don't really pay any attention to a story like that unless there's an actual name that's put on, so, I assume it's just sources? Sources? So I don't know who that is. It's nobody with the Warriors. So, we have great respect for the Thunder. Sam's been a friend of mine forever. They're first class, so I don't know where that comes from."

Kerr said "emotional returns or farewells" in the NBA have become "routine" because "guys get traded, they get cut, they sign elsewhere as free agents."

"This league is a very interesting place all the way through. Certain stories that don't need to see the light of day, don't need to have any life kind of breathed into them, are somehow the most popular. It's kind of how it goes," he said. "To me it's kind of comical. Just what can be put on a spotlight during an 82-game year, and at the end of the day we're all just trying to win games and enjoy what we do for a living and that's it."

Curry said he wasn't surprised by the story.

"I actually look forward to waking up and seeing what ridiculousness is posted," he said.

Ethan Sherwood Strauss/ESPN

Tags: Kevin Durant, Golden State Warriors, Oklahoma City Thunder, NBA

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Warriors Were Upset At Thunder Leadership During Kevin Durant's Return Game

Mar 20, 2017 1:29 AM

The Golden State Warriors organization was furious and bewildered about the inactivity from Oklahoma City Thunder leadership leading up to Kevin Durant's return contest on Feb. 11.

The Warriors were of the mindset that someone from ownership or management should have addressed the media on Durant's behalf to help ease the tension upon his return.

The Warriors felt Durant should have been acknowledged or thanked in a news conference setting for his time with the Thunder.

The Thunder's silence contributed to the raw emotions, outrage and indignation that created an unsettling, hostile atmosphere, according to the Warriors.

There was no mention from the in-game operations staff about Durant's return.

"When Kevin made the decision to leave and move on from Oklahoma and the Thunder, we responded in a manner that is consistent with how the Thunder tries to conduct itself, and I am incredibly proud of the people across our entire organization and the professionalism they have demonstrated," Thunder general manager Sam Presti told ESPN's Royce Young leading up to the Warriors' first game in Oklahoma City earlier this season. "They have embraced Kevin's past with the Thunder while sensibly and passionately investing in those that stand with us as we continue our work in Oklahoma with an inspired and positive outlook.

"We are fortunate to have people like Russell, Nick, Steven and Billy in place, individuals who care deeply about the Thunder and what it stands for in our community and who are proud of their contributions to date, yet driven and honored to write our next chapter together."

Chris Haynes/ESPN

Tags: Kevin Durant, Golden State Warriors, Oklahoma City Thunder, NBA, NBA Signing Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Straw Poll Of 106 Media Members Shows Harden Ahead Of Westbrook In MVP Race

Mar 16, 2017 4:12 PM

In a straw poll of 106 media members who cover the NBA, James Harden placed first with 910 points ahead of Russell Westbrook with 768.

Harden received 53 first-place votes while Westbrook had 26 first-place votes. Harden finished second in MVP voting in 2015 behind Stephen Curry.

Kawhi Leonard (658) and LeBron James (600) finished third and fourth in the poll.

Isaiah Thomas or John Wall are vying to round out the top-5.

Tim Bontemps/Washington Post

Tags: James Harden, Russell Westbrook, Houston Rockets, Oklahoma City Thunder, NBA, NBA Award

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Russell Westbrook In Danger Of Falling Below 10 Assists Per Game

Mar 7, 2017 7:23 PM

Russell Westbrook is in danger of dropping below 10.0 assists per game as he attempts to record the first triple double for the season in over 50 years.

Westbrook's assists per game have dropped from 10.25 to 10.05 over the past week. Westbrook has 633 assists in 63 games, which means he needs to average 9.8 down the stretch.

Westbrook’s assists totals were four, nine and five on the road trip, which is an average of 6.0 per game. 

Of his top 19 assist totals this season, only one has come since February arrived. Westbrook is averaging 9.14 assists in February and March.

Westbrook is averaging 11.3 assists per game at home compared to 8.9 on the road.

Berry Tramel/Oklahoman

Tags: Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City Thunder, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

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Mark Cuban Doesn't Put Russell Westbrook In MVP Conversation

Mar 6, 2017 10:53 AM

Mark Cuban continues to discount the play of Russell Westbrook.

Cuban said Sunday that the MVP battle is a "toss-up" between Houston's James Harden and Cleveland's LeBron James, with San Antonio's Kawhi Leonard also deserving of mention in the conversation.

Cuban was then asked where Westbrook is in his consideration for MVP.

 

"He's not," Cuban said.

Cuban acknowledges that Westbrook is "an amazing athlete" who is the "most explosive" player in the league and has the "best motor."

"The criteria hasn't changed," Cuban said. With a wry smile, he added: "And if I changed my mind, it would ruin all the fun for you guys."

Cuban has consistently said in the past that he doesn't consider Westbrook to be one of the NBA's superstars.

 

Tim MacMahon/ESPN

Tags: Dallas Mavericks, Oklahoma City Thunder, NBA, NBA Award

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LeBron James, Russell Westbrook Named Players Of The Month For February

Mar 2, 2017 3:34 PM

LeBron James and Russell Westbrook have been named the NBA's Players of the Month for February.

The Cavaliers were 9-1 with James in the lineup as he averaged 25.9 points, 10.6 assists and 7.2 rebounds per game.

Westbrook averaged a triple-double of 33.4 points, 11.0 rebounds and 10.0 assists as the Thunder went 7-4 in February. Westbrook posted six triple-doubles in February.

RealGM Staff Report

Tags: Cleveland Cavaliers, Oklahoma City Thunder, NBA, NBA Award

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Thunder Sign Norris Cole For Remainder Of Season

Feb 28, 2017 4:14 PM

The Oklahoma City Thunder have signed Norris Cole for the remainder of the season.

Oklahoma City traded away Cameron Payne last week and needed a backup point guard.

Cole went unsigned as a free agent in the offseason after averaging 10.6 points and 3.7 assists for the New Orleans Pelicans in 15-16. Cole signed with the Chinese Basketball Association in October, but departed in December after suffering an injury. Cole received clearance from the CBA in recent days to sign with the Thunder.

Shams Charania/The Vertical

Tags: Norris Cole, Oklahoma City Thunder, NBA, NBA Signing Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Thunder Acquire Doug McDermott, Taj Gibson From Bulls For Cameron Payne

Feb 23, 2017 2:46 PM

The Oklahoma City Thunder have agreed to send Joffrey Lauvergne and Anthony Morrow to the Chicago Bulls for Doug McDermott, Taj Gibson and a 2018 second round pick.

Gibson will be a free agent in the offseason.

Shams Charania/The Vertical

Tags: Chicago Bulls, Oklahoma City Thunder, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Bulls, Thunder Discussing Doug McDermott, Taj Gibson, Andre Roberson, Cameron Payne

Feb 23, 2017 2:09 PM

The Chicago Bulls and Oklahoma City Thunder have held trade discussions focused on Doug McDermott and Taj Gibson.

The Bulls have interest in Cameron Payne and Andre Roberson.

Both Roberson and Gibson will be free agents.

Marc Stein, Royce Young/ESPN

Tags: Doug McDermott, Cameron Payne, Taj Gibson, Chicago Bulls, Oklahoma City Thunder, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Thunder Targeting Taj Gibson
Taj Gibson will be an unrestricted free agent in the offseason.

Marc Stein/ESPN

Clippers, Thunder Continue To Express Interest In Wilson Chandler
Wilson Chandler requested a trade from the Nuggets in early February.

Sam Amick/USA Today

James Harden: Durant, Westbrook 'Have To Figure It Out Themselves'
James Harden has remained close with both Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook.

Scott Cacciola/New York Times

Clippers, Thunder Interested In Wilson Chandler
Both the Clippers and Thunder have limited assets to offer though they'd like to be buyers at the deadline.

Adrian Wojnarowski/The Vertical

Russell Westbrook: I'm Happy With My Team I Have Now
When Russell Westbrook was asked more questions about Kevin Durant and the Warriors, he began to reply with questions to the reporters about fashion.

RealGM Staff Report

Russell Westbrook Becomes 5th Straight Different Pre-ASG PER Leader
The NBA has had a different leader in PER in each of the past five seasons since LeBron James' streak of six straight came to an end with Kevin Durant in 13-14.

RealGM Staff Report

LeBron, Durant, Curry, Harden, Westbrook Comprise NBA's Top-5 In Total Earnings
LeBron James is the highest-paid player in the NBA in terms of total earnings for the third straight year at $88 million.

Kurt Badenhausen/Forbes

Thunder Sought Patterson, Powell, No. 9 From Raptors For Ibaka In June
The Thunder asked for Patrick Patterson, Norman Powell and the No. 9 overall pick that became Jakob Poeltl from the Raptors.

Ryan Wolstat/Toronto Sun

Warriors-Thunder Draws Highest Non-Christmas Rating Since 2013
The broadcast peaked with a 4.7 from 11-11:15 p.m. ET.

RealGM Staff Report

Westbrook On Durant's Return: Got To Move Forward
Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant were teammates for eight seasons.

Royce Young/ESPN

Russell Westbrook: Durant Did A Lot For OKC, Crowd Reaction Up To Them
After the Thunder played their final game before the first return of Kevin Durant with the Warriors, Russell Westbrook was asked what type of atmosphere he's expecting.

Royce Young/ESPN

Kevin Durant Realized Westbrook Storyline 'Fake Drama'
Kevin Durant admitted he's "been thinking" about his return to Oklahoma City this Saturday "for the last month" and just wants "to experience it [and] see how I feel once that moment comes."

ESPN

James Harden Overtakes Westbrook As Oddsmakers' MVP Favorite
James Harden's odds are at 10/11 compared to 5/4 for Westbrook.

Erik Horne/Oklahoman

Sam Presti: Some People In OKC Hold Themselves Differently Because Of Westbrook
Sam Presti suggests Russell Westbrook helps people in Oklahoma City with their job interviews because of his confidence.

Sam Anderson/New York Times Magazine

Enes Kanter Apologizes For Breaking Forearm
Enes Kanter fractured his arm when he attempted to punch the seat of a padded chair in frustration.

Royce Young/ESPN

Enes Kanter Out 6-8 Weeks With Fractured Forearm
Enes Kanter suffered a fractured right forearm punching his hand on a chair.

Royce Young/ESPN

Kings Aspired To Create Big 3 With Russell Westbrook, DeMarcus Cousins, Rudy Gay
Vivek Ranadive previously told one league insider he aspired for the Kings to assemble a big three with Russell Westbrook joining DeMarcus Cousins and Rudy Gay.

Kevin Arnovitz/ESPN

Russell Westbrook Promises Revenge Upon Zaza Pachulia
Zaza Pachulia was handed a flagrant foul 1 for the play, following a review by the officials.

Royce Young/ESPN

Kevin Durant Reflects On Time With Westbrook, Harden
Kevin Durant reflected back this week on how special the Thunder were earlier in his career playing beside fellow MVP candidates Russell Westbrook and James Harden.

Anthony Slater/San Jose Mercury News

Thunder Assign Semaj Christon To D-League
In 36 games with the Thunder this season, Semaj Christon is averaging 3.2 points and 1.4 assists in 15.4 minutes.

RealGM Staff Report