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Baller’s Blueprint: How Kevin Durant takes your team’s heart

By 11.11.10

When it’s crunch time for the Thunder, you can bet on OKC head coach Scott Brooks demanding that Kevin Durant gets the ball with room to operate and the floor spaced correctly. Last night, down the stretch after a Philadelphia rally that had them within four points with under a minute to go, it was time for Durant to seal the deal.

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1. The Thunder get the ball to Durant in his comfort zone on the right side of the court, where he faces up rookie Evan Turner. On the weak side the Thunder have a triangle forming, which makes the Sixer defense commit to staying with their man or bringing Elton Brand across the lane to the right block to challenge Durant even before he puts the ball on the floor. Brand has to make a choice because of the defensive three-second rule, and he elects to stay weakside.

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2. With Russell Westbrook as the only other Thunder player on the strong side of the floor, Jrue Holiday attempts to stay between him and Durant to shut off the dribble-drive to the middle, which has Durant thinking baseline all the way. After Durant’s efficiently long stride step and dribble, Brand is late to react in getting across the lane.

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3. Durant turns the corner without a problem on Turner and draws the contact as well, which sends his body towards the baseline. But because of Durant’s length and athletic ability, he turns his back to the baseline to create an angle to finish as Brand is now in the middle of the lane loading up in an attempt to block the shot.

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4. Brand is late in his attempt to block the shot as Durant’s body, though behind the basket, is in total control as he flips the ball up and in to shut the door on the Sixers.

TAGSBaller's BlueprintDimeMagElton BrandEVAN TURNERfeatureFeatured GalleryJrue HolidayLatest NewsRUSSELL WESTBROOK

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