Commentary

Thunder still too predictable in clutch

Friday Harbingers: Portland's pace, D-Will worries, more (PER Diem: Dec. 30, 2011)

Updated: December 30, 2011, 4:57 PM ET
By John Hollinger | ESPN.com
Kevin DurantAP Photo/Alonzo AdamsKevin Durant's game-winning dagger was a sight to behold, but Dallas should've seen it coming.

It was the shot of the year so far, both for Kevin Durant and whoever is in charge of those extreme zoom-out shots from the top of the arena rafters. But it masked another reality: Oklahoma City still needs to figure how to make its crunch-time offense less predictable.

It was most notable in the Thunder's Game 4 collapse against Dallas, but it was a problem for Oklahoma City all of last season. When the going gets tough, the Thunder end up with Durant shooting a 35-footer under duress. He's good enough to make it sometimes, as he did last night, but this is not a high-percentage play. (Rick Carlisle rarely goofs in these situations, but he's gotta be second-guessing himself for having Delonte West on the bench and Jason Terry on the court; tiny Terry was the one challenging the 6-foot-9 Durant's shot.)

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