PASPN.net - Veteran Collison a perfect fit for young Thunder (Reuters)
Nick Collison News
Trans. Jun 13 4:46 ET (Jun 13 4:46 ET ) OKLAHOMA CITY (Reuters) - Lost in the flashiness of the Oklahoma City Thunder's offensive fireworks is soft-spoken forward Nick Collison, a steady hand on a young team playing for the National Basketball Association (NBA) championship. The Thunder's series-opening 105-94 victory over the Miami Heat on Tuesday in the NBA Finals was vintage Collison: eight points, 10 rebounds and one steal in 21 minutes. On a night that Kevin Durant scores 36 and backcourt mate Russell Westbrook adds 27, hardly a word was spoken about Collison's vital contribution off the bench. ...
Nick Collison (sprained ankle) was back in action vs. Utah on Tuesday, notching eight points in 11 minutes while making both of his 3-point attempts.
The Scoop:The 10-year veteran has five made 3-pointers in his entire career. He has a nice jumper and the Thunder may ask him to hedge toward the arc more this season, but we're not expecting a late-career renaissance as a stretch-PF. With a 15-minute role as a blue-collar defender, screen-setter and rebounder, there's not much to like about Collison's fantasy outlook.
The Scoop:Collison had arthroscopic knee surgery in June but he's since fully recovered, and his ankle injury sounds very minor. The 10-year veteran fills an important niche as a backup big man off the Thunder bench, but it's not a role that translates to fantasy value.
The Scoop:He had his knee scoped back in June and was never expected to miss time at training camp. Collison has been a staple in the OKC second unit, but his stats haven't jumped off the page in almost a decade. He can be ignored in fantasy leagues.
Nick Collison has long been the kind of hardworking, won't-show-up-in-the-box-score-play-making contributor who sets Oklahoma City Thunder fans (and adjusted plus/minus acolytes ) hearts' aflame. The 33-year-old forward hasn't been a regular starter in six years, but when he gets his 15 to 20 minutes of floor time, he tends to give maximum effort, putting the proverbial blood, sweat and tears into his work on both ends of the floor. As you might remember, though, during the third quarter of the Thunder's April 3 home victory over the San Antonio Spurs — who would get their revenge a couple of months later before getting a second, far sweeter brand of vengeance — the blood went from "proverbial" to "pretty flippin' real," "pervasive" and "pouring out of his skull": Collison began losing vital fluid after being clocked in the head by the elbow of Spurs big man Jeff Ayres while vying for a rebound, but continued going about his business (naturally) until eventually the refs realized he was about four seconds away from sporting a Dusty Rhodes-style crimson mask and stopped play. Collison calmly sauntered over to the bench, sat down and bled some more while the trainers tried to clean him up; when they couldn't, Collison bled some more, stood up and calmly sauntered to the locker room to receive eight stitches . Collison later returned to the game (naturally) and all was well. You'd never know that he'd been lacerated and leaking mere minutes earlier ... well, unless you took a close look at his shoes, which had taken a little bit of splatter amid all that screen-setting and sauntering. Now, if you're in the market for an arguably gross but in arguably unique bit of memorabilia, you can win the right to take a closer look at the splatter whenever you want by bidding on those game-worn, autographed and, yes, blood-stained kicks as part of the Thunder Cares August Auction : Oklahoma City Thunder forward/center Nick Collison wore these shoes during the April 3, 2014, Thunder home game against the San Antonio Spurs. During the game, Collison took a hit to the head, resulting in a cut that left several drops of blood on these shoes, which Collison later autographed. Check out the goods:
Sam Presti isn't worried about Mitch McGary's past issue with marijuana. ''He took accountability,'' Presti said. Oklahoma City might be looking toward the future at the power forward and center spots. Starting center Kendrick Perkins and reserve power forward Nick Collison are entering the last year of their deals.
The Scoop:The team also tweeted that he is expected to miss 4-6 weeks and then return to normal offseason activities. The reported timetable shouldn't have any effect on Collison's availability for the 2014-15 season as he should be ready for the start of training camp barring any setbacks. While the 33-year-old is a solid fixture in the Thunder's rotation, his 2013-14 averages of 4.2 points, 3.6 rebounds, and 1.3 assists do a good job of illustrating his limited fantasy upside.
Jun 19 12:00 ET
News (various sources)
Russell Westbrook's right hand fracture could keep him out until mid-December (Ball Don't Lie) (1 Day Ago | courtesy: Ball Don't Lie) For a while there, it appeared as if Russell Westbrook was going to have to carry the load. To use his own formidable gifts to put together an MVP-worthy month while Kevin Durant slowly and smartly worked his way back from a right foot fracture. At this point, sadly, it looks as if the rest of the Oklahoma City Thunder will have to do the heavy lifting, as both Durant and Westbrook are likely out until the middle of December. Westbrook suffered a fracture in his right hand on Thursday night in OKC’s second game of the season, likely knocking him out for the next four to six weeks. Darnell Mayberry, at the Oklahoman, has the report : The early indication is that Russell Westbrook could miss four to six weeks after fracturing the second metacarpal in his right hand Thursday against the Los Angeles Clippers. It could keep the Thunder's electric point guard sidelined through mid-December and add him to an already ridiculously long list of injured Oklahoma City players who are expected to miss the season's first month. […] Westbrook appeared to sustain his hand injury with just over eight minutes remaining in the second quarter of the Thunder's 93-90 loss to the Clippers. After missing a shot in front of the rim, Westbrook went for the offensive rebound but hit his hand against [Kendrick] Perkins' back. Westbrook immediately looked down at his hand and grimaced. As he transitioned on defense, he attempted to shake off the discomfort. But 90 seconds later, Westbrook removed himself from the game and after pausing briefly at the end of the bench darted toward the locker room. Here’s Perk’s sad recognition: Kendrick Perkins, upon being told by @DarnellMayberry that collision with Perkins broke Westbrook's hand: "Was that the play? Damn." — KEVIN DING (@KevinDing) October 31, 2014 If you believe in basketball karma, then this is a good time to disabuse yourself of that cosmic notion. The Thunder are a well-meaning, sound group of professionals who were more or less knocked out of championship contention in 2013 and 2014 because of an injury to Westbrook and a lack of depth following a franchise-killing trade involving James Harden. If you believe in corporate karma, then you’re in luck – the team’s owners just about signed up for this by avoiding the luxury tax, dealing Harden, and putting the Thunder in this sort of perilous position. Then again, assuming that corporate-types are anything more than soulless to begin with is a bit of a stretch. The Thunder, with reserve guard Reggie Jackson currently nursing an ankle injury, are now down to eight healthy players. The team can legally field so few, but that limited crew won’t be much to sniff at despite its impressive showing against the Clippers on Thursday night. The Thunder’s front office can apply for a “hardship exception” that allows the squad to go over the typically allotted 15 roster spots in order to make up for injured compatriots, but doing as much would no doubt push the squad’s owners into a basketball vs. business decision. Infuriatingly, owners Clay Bennett and Aubrey McClendon have always sided with business over basketball. Currently, the Thunder sit about $1.6 million below the NBA’s luxury tax mark , and even dotting the payroll with minimum-salaried helpers on non-guaranteed contracts would inch the franchise closer and closer to a threshold it abhors. A threshold it gave up the league’s best shooting guard to avoid. It’s not yet November. The Oklahoma City Thunder could welcome back two of the league’s best players to its roster with three shopping weeks left before Christmas and make up for a lost November with heaps of wins by the time February hits. However, things look rather dour now in OKC, and Perkins’ inadvertent culpability in this has to be more than frustrating for Thunder fans who are aware of the team’s anti-amnesty history. It’s early, though. It’s a long season, and we’re just beginning. Early on, though … what an awful start to things. - - - - - - - Kelly Dwyer is an editor for Ball Don't Lie on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at KDonhoops@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter! Follow @KDonhoops More...