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Western Notes: Matthews, Aminu, Thunder

Wesley Matthews, who signed a four-year, max deal with the Mavs in July, is able to do more on his surgically-repaired left leg and there is a distinct possibility he will play without a minutes restriction by the end of November, Eddie Sefko of the Dallas Morning News writes. Sefko cites a couple of key plays, including a dive the shooting guard made, in Saturday’s game as steps forward for Matthews, who is limited to around 30 minutes per game.

Here’s more from around the Western Conference:

  • Al-Farouq Aminu is blossoming into a consistent scorer after inking a four-year deal with the Blazers during the summer because he is being utilized in a variety of ways offensively, Mike Richman of The Oregonian details. While Aminu’s best skill remains his versatility on defense, as Richman adds, Aminu is pushing the ball in fast-breaks and is more involved in pick-and-rolls. “I always thought that he was a solid piece to every team that he had been on. But he never had the opportunity to be the offensive player that he is for us,” Blazers point guard Damian Lillard said. “And I don’t think it was ever needed from him to be what he is for us.”  
  • Not much has changed so far statistically for the Thunder under new coach Billy Donovan as the team still isn’t strong defensively, a scout explained to Sam Amick of USA Today Sports. Before Sunday’s game, the Thunder were allowing 108 points per game so far this season, which was 27th in the league.
  • Jason Thompson, formerly of the Kings, clarified the comment he made last month when he said the comparison between his old team and the Warriors (his current team) is night and day, telling Matt Kawahara of the Sacramento Bee he just meant Golden State is “established.” “I just meant that there wasn’t uncertainty of positions, there wasn’t uncertainty of the front office, and everyone got along,” Thompson said of the Warriors.
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3 thoughts on “Western Notes: Matthews, Aminu, Thunder

  1. Chuck Myron

    What Aminu has done since leaving the Pelicans in 2014 makes you wonder why he wasn’t putting on these kinds of performances for New Orleans.

    • formerlyz

      They played him strictly at the 3, instead of being used as a 3/4, and the spacing around him was never as good as it was these last 2 years (mostly before the Mavs dealt for Rondo). Also, I would say he has clearly improved on making that jumpshot a little more

  2. formerlyz

    The thunder defense is a lot worse b/c they got rid of guys like Perry Jones and Jeremy Lamb in favor of playing bad defenders like Kyle Singler, etc. Plus, they obviously have Enes Kanter, which made no sense, considering they already have Ibaka, Adams, and McGary. They could use a win b defender…

    All that being said, they have been horrible at taking care of the ball and not turning it over. Also, they haven’t changed much offensively from the isolation they ran under Scott Brooks, and that leads to poor possessions, and bad shots. Those 2 things lead to more transition opportunities for opponents, and therefore, more scoring opportunities

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