Pump Up Music: Radiohead -- "Anyone Can Play Guitar"
The Big Picture: There's something about Kevin Durant that doesn't quite make sense in my head. I think it's because I desperately want him to be more like Carmelo Anthony, but there's no way Durantula will be a change-of-pace power forward the way Melo can be, and that gets to the heart of his basketball identity.
Ultimately, it seems Durant wants to be a perimeter player, even though he doesn't have to be. I'd certainly rather be Anthony than Joe Johnson. In college, Durant played enough front court to block nearly two shots per game, something he doesn't do at all in the pros. Furthermore, he takes way more threes and midrange jumpers than Anthony does, and doesn't get to the rim nearly as much.
I'm probably just exposing a little bit of frustration with a player of Durant's exceptional skill and body not using his gifts as effectively has he could. He's one of the great young players in the game, and he's helped lead OKC to a .500 record up to this point. KD has nothing to be ashamed of, but as a basketball fan, I want to see him expand his game.
Key to Victory: Gerald Wallace is a shutdown defender. If he's not on Durant, then Stephen Jackson should be. See what I mean by playing power forward as a change of pace? Boris Diaw is no slouch on defense, but making him cover Durant would be a tall challenge.
Tyson Chandler is out, but I'm not particularly worried. Nazr Mohammed should be an able replacement for about 30 minutes, and they'll probably go small with Diaw at center much of the time when Nazr is on the bench.
Detail That Might Interest .08% of You: Check out the concept uniforms Uni Watch readers designed for the at-the-time-still-unnamed OKC NBA club.