The Oklahoma City Thunder’s signing of Anthony Morrow is turning into one of the best offseason signings in the NBA.
OKC wisely reached out and acquired the sharpshooter over the summer, getting his signature on a three-year, $10 million contract. The way he is balling for them so far, it is looking like money well spent.
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After seeing Thabo Sefolosha sign with the Atlanta Hawks, and Derek Fisher retiring to go through growing pains coaching in New York, the Thunder needed to acquire a three-point sniper.
Insert Anthony Morrow, who has earned the reputation of being one of the best marksmen from downtown in the NBA.
Since joining the Thunder, Morrow has averaged 10.3 points on 43.6% shooting from the floor and 40% shooting from beyond the arc in 26 games.
He has fit the bill in his roll as a knockdown three-point shooter, and strategically gives OKC exactly what they need.
When you have players like Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook, two players who demand so much attention from opposing defenses, you need sharpshooters to be ready to fire.
Nobody can stop Westbrook from getting to the rack. When he makes defenses collapse, Morrow is outside making them pay.
That same rule applies for when Kevin Durant drives and kicks, Morrow more often than not is getting the opportunity to tickle the twine.
Morrow stretches defenses and makes life easier for the Thunder’s superstars to operate. Plus, when OKC is on the break, having a deadeye shooter trailing makes fast break that much more potent.
Nov 23, 2014; Oklahoma City, OK, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder guard Anthony Morrow (2) attempts a shot against Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green (23) during the fourth quarter at Chesapeake Energy Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports
In a foxsports.com article by Jeff Caplan, Morrow spoke about how his game benefits from having Durant and Westbrook drawing so much attention:
“It’s unbelievable, man. Offensively, you can do so many things, a lot of different lineups; just me really seeing how teams key in on those two guys, especially in transition, how much I was open and how much I will be open. I haven’t been that open in a long time than when I actually got on the court with those guys.”
The Oklahoma City Thunder are off to a slow start because of injuries to Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook coming out of the blocks this season.
Now with OKC getting to the .500 mark at 17-17, and sitting 1.5 games behind the Phoenix Suns who are in the eighth seed out West, the Thunder are going to need to collect wins sooner rather than later.
With Morrow finding his stride with the Thunder, as well as the team getting healthy, those wins can come that much faster, and with the frequency they need to factor into the playoff picture.
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When the Oklahoma City Thunder get into the playoff fray, they are going to be dangerous.
Anthony Morrow, with the style of play that OKC runs, can be a difference maker that could put the Thunder over the top this time in the Western Conference playoffs.
Like OKC forward Nick Collison said in that same foxsports.com article:
“A guy like Anthony is going to look really good when we’re really executing and passing the ball, and he’s getting a lot of open shots,We’ve been pretty good this year. But to really get the thing flowing and playing how we want to play, I think he’ll be even better when we’re really executing like we’re capable.”
If you are reading into what Nick Collison is saying, the Thunder’s best basketball is ahead of them, and so is Anthony Morrow’s.