OKLAHOMA CITY — Former Oklahoma City power forward Nick Collison’s jersey will soon hang in the rafters at Chesapeake Energy Arena.
The Kansas product played 14 seasons with the organization (four with the Seattle SuperSonics), averaging 5.9 points and 5.2 rebounds over a career that statistically peaked during the 2007-2008 season: 9.8 points, 9.4 rebounds, 0.8 blocks.
Golden State’s Kevin Durant will reportedly be there for the ceremony on March 20 to honor his former teammate with whom he played for nine seasons.
"That group was so special, that whole group from 2010 until I left there, it was special," Durant told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski "It's about time for us to let go of all that extra stuff, and just come together, especially around this time, because it's Nick."
• Three in a row: Russell Westbrook finished Sunday night’s game with 13 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists, his third straight triple double. Coming into Sunday night’s game, Westbrook was already averaging a triple double on the season with averages of 21.9 points, 10.8 rebounds and a league-leading 10.7 assists.
Despite shooting 5 of 20 from the field, and 2 of 5 from 3-point land, Donovan praised Westbrook’s game Sunday night, crediting him for pushing the pace and the team’s ball movement.
“He didn’t shoot the ball great tonight, but boy he played great. I think in the first half we had 16 assists. This has been going on now for 10 or 12 games where our assist numbers are way up … He’s been really good offensively in terms of how he’s played. I know his shooting numbers are not up … but what he’s doing in terms of pushing the pace of play, getting guys shots, and getting us playing fast, he’s doing a lot of great things.”
• Rotation scheme: Donovan has been toying with rotations as of late, staggering the playing time of Paul George and Russell Westbrook. That strategy was in play again Sunday as Donovan opted to use George’s offense to lift the second unit.
The duo closed together in the final six minutes of the first half and the final five minutes of the game.
• Play of the game: Steven Adams’ surprising steal, full-court run and Euro-step finish drew thunderous applause, but the play-of-the game had to go to Paul George — either his game-sealing 3-pointer with under a minute to go, or his one-handed tomahawk dunk on Giannis Antetokounmpo less than 30 seconds earlier.
Both put the Thunder back up by six points.
• Injured and out: Thunder guard Alex Abrines was “available” to play Sunday but was again confined to the bench for an undisclosed personal issue. Donovan did not share any details beyond “he’s not in a position to play.” Abrines has not seen the floor since Dec. 23.
Donovan said there is still not timetable for the return of Andre Roberson.