Thunder Wraps Up Shootaround for Game 5
Both Collison and Brooks talked about the focused mentality necessary to win a potential close-out game. The Thunder, up 3-1 in the best-of-seven, second-round series, will need its “A” game tonight and to be locked in mentally.
“We’re ready for another tough, physical game,” Collison said. “We know we have an opportunity to close out the series, but you can’t do that unless you play well.”
Brooks and Collison also commended Kendrick Perkins’ ability to rebound the ball in the fourth quarter of Game 4 in Los Angeles, with the realization that the same type of effort on the glass will be necessary in Game 5. The Thunder knows the Lakers will be playing for their Playoff lives tonight, so it has to replicate the same level of hustle, aggression and energy that it displayed in the fourth quarter of Saturday's 103-100 victory.
Now playing its sixth Playoff series as a unit since arriving in Oklahoma City, the Thunder has built up some experience that it can put to the test tonight. As the Thunder found out in Game 4 against the Mavericks, and in two series in 2011, close-out games are always the hardest. Check back for more from shootaround soon, including previews from Thunder Basketball Writer Nick Gallo, our Thunder broadcasters and more.