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12.30 The Cooler

Kevin Durant Rips the Heart out of the Mavs; Kobe Bryant Demoralizes the Knicks

By 12.30.11
Kevin Durant

Kevin Durant (photo. Greg Morris)


As long as the door’s open a crack, Kevin Durant can – and will – sneak attack you and steal a game. Last night in Oklahoma City, KD did just that. A back-and-forth game between the Thunder and the Mavs came down to a final two minutes dominated by big shots. With the Mavs down one, Vince Carter drilled a three from the top of the key off a Dirk decoy play with just 1.4 seconds to go. After a timeout, the Thunder inbounded to Durant, and despite everyone in the gym knowing he was taking the shot, the Mavs inexplicably A) let KD catch the inbounds pass cleanly and B) gave him some daylight to get off a shot. Buckets. Thunder win … Seriously, you let anyone take that shot other than Durant, right? Even a Russell Westbrook clean look is preferable … By the way, have you seen Russ’ MJ-powered skates?? … How’s this for efficiency? KD got 30, going 10-15 from the floor … We know there’s no substitute for NBA games and practices for players to get in game shape, but dudes who showed up to camp completely out of shape? No excuse. On last night’s TNT broadcast, Mike Fratello said that on the Mavs’ off day on Wednesday, the team made Lamar Odom come in for two hours of conditioning work. Then he had to come back early before the team’s shootaround on gameday yesterday for more … Interesting observation from Steve Kerr last night: The Thunder use a bunch of the same exact plays for James Harden the Spurs have used for years for Manu Ginobili … Twitter was abuzz yesterday about how Deron Williams and Dwight Howard had dinner in Orlando on Wednesday night. You can imagine what was discussed, but once the Nets/Magic game started, Dwight was in seek-and-destroy mode. The Magic stomped the Nets, 94-78, and DH went for a 16-point, 24-board, 3-block, 3-steal, 3-assist night. It was the 49th 20-rebound game of Howard’s career … In the first two minutes of the game, Howard sent a Memo Okur shot out to halfcourt and nearly 10 rows up the stands … Basketball cannot be fun for Deron Williams right now. He’s the only real offensive weapon on a bad team and is facing constant double-teams and it shows. Last night he had 10 points, on 2-10 shooting. It’s amazing that he came up with seven assists with the players he has around him. D-will’s on an island and the only guy he has to help him is Marshon Brooks (17 points) … We’re getting close to permanent-vacation time for Tim Duncan. The Hall of Fame-lock got benched last night in Houston as his Spurs got blasted 105-85. Duncan was a miserable 1-8 from the floor and finished with four points … Kyle Lowry was a monster for Houston, just missing a triple-double with 16 points, nine boards and eight assists … Click for more: Kobe demoralizes the Knicks, Tyreke Evans and Derrick Rose battle in Sacramento


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