The Los Angeles Lakers have won three straight games since the All-Star break, and on Sunday get to face the new-look Oklahoma City Thunder. On Thursday, the day of the NBA trading deadline, the Thunder were a busy team, boosting their front court depth in a pair of deals. They acquired center Kendrick Perkins and guard Nate Robinson from the Celtics for Jeff Green, Nenad Krstic, and a first-round draft pick, then traded D.J. White and Morris Peterson to the Bobcats for center Nazr Mohammed.â†µ
The moves give Oklahoma City the big bodies they feel they need in a possible playoff rematch with Pau Gasol, Andrew Bynum, Lamar Odom, and the Lakers. Last season, the Thunder battled the heavily favored Lakers, taking them to six games in the first round before falling to the eventual champs. None of the new Thunder players played last night, and they suffered a 23-point loss to Dwight Howard and the Magic, in what Welcome To Loud City called the worst loss of the season:â†µ
By the end of the game, the Thunder looked like a team which could get no scoring out of their big men, and relied on the three way too much. In other words, they looked like a completely different team. Durant and Westbrook weren't getting good opportunities, and a open shot in the lane was few and far between.â†µ
All the new players are expected to have their first practice with Oklahoma City today, and should play against the Lakers on Sunday's matchup. However, Perkins is expected to be out a week or so with a sprained left knee, per the Associated Press. Tomorrow's showdown in Oklahoma City is at 11:30 p.m. PST, and will be televised on ABC.â†µ
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