Prior to Oklahoma City’s game at Phoenix on Friday night I wrote that Josh Giddy would need to be the guy to take the shots for the Thunder. The late scratch of SGA only amplified the need for another scorer to step into the spotlight and, as it turns out, that guy was Isaiah Joe. It wasn’t a matter of volume that put Joe at the top of OKC’s box score, it was a matter of consistency. Joe only took three more shots than Giddey but he 11 of his 16 attempts, resulting in a 28-point performance.
Giddey entered Friday night’s game having shot shot 50% or better in six of OKC’s eight games in the month of February. That’s absolutely wasn’t the case against the Suns though. Despite having the opportunity to launch 14 shots, he only connected on three of them. The result was a 7-point performance that was his lowest output since December 27th when he was held to 7 points against the Spurs on a 3-of-11 performance.
It wasn’t a flawed strategy as much as it was flawed execution as the shots just weren’t falling for Giddey. His struggles from the floor led to just 24 minutes of playing time, which was the fewest among the Thunder starters on Friday evening. That said, there’s nothing to panic about at this moment in regards to Giddey’s game. He’s consistently a double-figure scorer and has 24 games of scoring ten points or more between his last two single digit performances.
Despite back-to-back losses, Oklahoma City is just a game behind Utah for the #10 spot in the Western Conference standings. The Thunder return to the Paycom Center on Sunday for the first of two back-to-back games against Sacramento (Sunday and Tuesday).
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