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On the NBA Beat Ep. 5a: Chuck Chaney: Thanks to Donovan, Westbrook is Thunder’s Best Player

Following Tuesday’s
win over the Wizards, we caught up with 
Chuck Chaney of ThunderObsessed.com to
discuss the current state of the Oklahoma City Thunder. Chuck is encouraged by
the increased space new coach Billy Donovan’s system has afforded the
offense, but he’s wary of the Thunder’s lack of defensive intensity. It’s still
“extended training camp,” for this team and coach, Chuck asserts, but they
won’t be a championship contender if they can’t find a way to defend.

Some notable sections

Interviewing Scott Brooks “was like talking to a wall, and the paint’s drying,”
given that he was fond of using “Thunder speak.” Conversely, Billy Donovan is a
“refreshing” personality, at least from a media perspective.

6:30-6:55: “Donovan
really emphasizes that extra pass,” allowing Westbrook and company to flourish.
“He (Westbrook) is the best player on this team because of Billy Donovan right

7:30-8:30: Exploring
the Thunder’s bad habit of late-game offensive stagnation and signs of
improvement in that area 

13:45-14:30: More on Dion Waiters, who has excelled in the sixth-man role so far

14:50-15:30: “Enes
(Kanter), for some reason, is like a ballerina on offense, but on defense, he
looks like a newborn giraffe learning to walk.”   

21:10-22:25: Chuck is
“not sold on them winning the whole thing.” The Thunder have to improve on
defense by learning Donovan’s defensive system, more effectively running shooters
off the 3-point line and displaying better effort on that end.   

22:30-22:55: On Steven
Adams’ new hairstyle: “Seeing it at Media Day was pretty impressive. I got to
touch it…(it’s) like a horse. It’s like a mane. It was soft.” 

Music: “Who Likes To Party” by Kevin MacLeod