By CLIFF BRUNT, AP Sports Writer
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — The Thunder’s new Big Three looked ready to do big things in their first action together.
Fans got their first chance to see reigning MVP Russell Westbrook and All-Stars Paul George and Carmelo Anthony play together since the Thunder acquired George and Anthony in trades. They were dominant in Oklahoma City’s 102-91 win over New Orleans on Friday night.
Westbrook played for the first time this preseason after getting a platelet rich plasma injection in his knee. He missed the team’s Blue-White scrimmage and the preseason opener against Houston in Tulsa on Monday. He finished with nine points, four assists and one rebound in 9:58 before coming out for good late in the first quarter. Westbrook has said that he is fine and the injection is something he does each year, but he did it later than usual this year because he spent a lot of time at home focusing on his newborn son.
Now that Westbrook is back to basketball, Thunder coach Billy Donovan can start figuring out how to blend the stars’ skill sets.
“That’s the thing with Coach,” George said. “He sat down with myself, sat down with Russ, Carmelo and he wants us to be ourselves. He wants us to bring what makes us so special. Just do it within the confinements of this team. That’s what’s going to make the game easier for everybody.”
George scored 25 points in just over 27 minutes and Anthony added nine points and six rebounds.
George said he’s still adjusting to Westbrook’s speed, mentally and physically.
“We joke about it — how to run a fastbreak, because he is just so fast,” George said. “About the time you catch it, your feet is all messed up trying to catch up to him. It’s going to be an adjustment, but again, you got a guy to put that much pressure on defense, you know it’s going to make the game so much easier for me. So my job is the easy part. It’s just to finish those plays for him.”
Anthony Davis led the Pelicans with 14 points and seven rebounds. DeMarcus Cousins scored 13 points and Ian Clark and Jrue Holiday each scored 11.
Get our free daily email updates. Click HERE to sign up.
Spread the word about your business or service, sponsor SPORTS or another section of heavenerledger.com. Call (918) 649-4712 for more information.
To submit a story or information, or to make a correction please send an email to [email protected]
Copyright 2017 Heavener Ledger. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.