The Oklahoma City Thunder’s second-best player isn’t Carmelo Anthony or Paul George, it’s center Steven Adams. Yes, that Steven Adams, the seven-footer from New Zealand is having a career year this year in his fifth year in the league. Adams is averaging career bests across the board in points, rebounds, field goal percentage, etc. Even with the addition of superstars Paul George and Carmelo Anthony, Adams is making a strong case that he’s OKC’s second best player on the team. Melo and PG still seem to be trying to fit into this Billy Donavan system, both struggling with getting into a rhythm with the reigning league MVP, Russell Westbrook.
Either it’s Russ and PG flowing one night, or Russ and Melo, or Melo and PG get it going. There have only been a few games this season where all three have been clicking on all cylinders. However, there’s been on constant. Steven Funaki Adams. Russell Westbrook is taking 21 shots a game with a .436 field goal percentage. Paul George is taking 16 shots a game with a .430 field goal percentage. Melo is averaging a career low in scoring (17.6) per game, taking 15 shots a game. Melo also is shooting the lowest career-low field goal percentage (.420%) since his rookie year (.426%). Who is there to clean up all those misses? Who is there for the put-back? Steven Adams.
His Numbers Don’t Lie
Adams is second on the team in rebounds (8.8 per) only behind his superstar teammate Russell Westbrook who’s averaging 9.6 per game. He’s also second on the team in field goal percentage (.635%) behind Nick Collison (.833) who’s only played in eight games this year. Steven is doing a little bit of everything, leading the Thunder in blocks with a little more than one a game. Who would have thought with all of the offensive talents OKC acquired this offseason that the “OK3” would really just be the big two with Russell and Adams to start the season.
I have no doubt that the Thunder will get it together. They have three superstars, they will make it work. It seems like everyone’s put their ego’s aside and are really trying to mesh together. Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither was a championship team. Steven Adams has been the glue thus far for the Thunder, and the team has started to respond to his energy. Even though his numbers don’t jump off the page at you, you can’t deny that his contribution this year has been a major part of keeping the Thunder afloat through 45 games.