Kendrick Perkins said Wednesday he's "pretty sure" he'll still be with the Thunder next season.
It's good Perk is so sure of his return because we're definitely not. Perkins is a candidate for OKC's amnesty clause given the $18.63 million left on his contract over the next two seasons. Perkins also hasn't played like he deserved anywhere close to that sort of payday in quite a while. Given OKC's need for a legit third scorer and a budget already crunched by Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and Serge Ibaka's big deals, it wouldn't be surprising if Perkins finds himself a free agent.
Kevin Martin said he'd love to stay with the Thunder but will go through the process of free agency.
Martin came to the Thunder as one of the central pieces in the James Harden deal. Although he had his moments, Martin failed to replicate the off-the-bench production OKC got from Harden last season. We imagine Martin will have a fair amount of suitors in free agency and it's unlikely the Thunder will overpay to keep him. Depending on the asking price, Martin looks like he might be a one-year rental for OKC.
Kevin Durant hit just 5-of-21 shots, was 0-for-4 from downtown and 11-of-15 from the line to finish with 21 points, eight rebounds, six assists, two blocks and seven turnovers in Wednesday's Game 5 elimination loss to the Grizzlies.
This was KD's worst shooting night of the season, as he went 1-on-5 all night against a tough Grizzlies' defense. Durant got himself wide open for a potential game-tying shot at the end, but wasn't even close with the attempt. Scott Brooks will catch a lot of heat for his poor game plan (Durant vs. the Grizzlies), but this would have likely been a much different series had Russell Westbrook not blown out his knee. Serge Ibaka had 17 points, eight boards and three blocks in the loss, while Reggie Jackson had 16 points, nine boards, five assists and a huge 3-pointer in the loss.
The Hawks interviewed Nate McMillan for their head coaching job on Wednesday, despite the fact current coach Larry Drew is under contract until June 30, and has not been let go.
It sounds like Drew is not likely to return as the coach of the Hawks, but it also appears that Danny Ferry and the Hawks want to keep him available as an option in case a better candidate isn't found. As usual, the Hawks seem to listen to their own drummer when it comes to organizational issues. Ferry is also said to be interested in Stan Van Gundy, but it doesn't appear likely that he'll coach next year, while the Bucks and Pistons are also interested in McMillan.
Kevin Durant is struggling in the fourth quarter and overtime over the last two games, shooting just 3-of-17 from the field.
Durant is being asked to do everything and he's looking like a player who runs out of gas at the finish line over the last couple of contests. Without Russell Westbrook, Durant will continue to shoulder a heavy load for the Thunder, and the only way the team will keep their season alive is if someone (anyone) can consistently assist Durant on the offensive end.
Beat writer Darnell Mayberry "can't wait" to see Reggie Jackson next season.
Jackson, the No. 24 overall pick in 2011, is gaining invaluable experience as a starting point guard in the playoffs. In the eight games since Russell Westbrook's injury, he's averaging 15.2 points, 4.8 rebounds and 3.5 assists. Jackson's first shot at unrestricted free agency will likely come in 2016.
Reggie Jackson played 48 minutes in Monday's overtime loss to the Grizzlies and had 15 points, four boards, eight assists, one block, one 3-pointer and four turnovers.
Besides making some bad decisions, Jackson had a solid outing against some stiff competition in Mike Conley. He's obviously no Russell Westbrook, but Jackson has been a pleasant surprise in these playoffs. The Thunder have been using Jackson along with Derek Fisher (three points, two boards and one 3-pointer in 26 minutes) in the backcourt a lot and they've been burned quite a bit because of it. They'll look to stay alive at home on Wednesday.