Sunday, October 28, 2007

Sunday Practice Report

After taking Saturday off, the Sonics returned to the practice court at The Furtado Center on Sunday for a session P.J. Carlesimo described as "fair."

Kevin Durant rejoined the team after missing the last two games of the exhibition season with a sprained left ankle. He participated in a shooting drill and worked out with assistant coaches Scott Brooks and Brian Keefe after practice. We should get a chance to talk to Durant tomorrow.

Carlesimo was asked whether he's getting closer to deciding on his starting lineup - specifically, a starter at point guard.

"I'm coming closer because we have to make a decision," Carlesimo said, "but I'm not getting any closer to knowing what I want to do."

As far as the point, Carlesimo said Delonte West "did a good job (Friday) at both positions." As West gets more practice time, Carlesimo explained, he's beginning to do more good things as part of executing the offense as opposed to merely freelancing instinctively based on his talent. He's also getting more comfortable playing point guard.

Carlesimo was also asked about the fast break and said, "We're maybe farther along with our transition offense than almost any other area of our game."

Some areas where Carlesimo has not been as pleased include defending the three-point line (he explained that the Sonics will show their improvement in that regard when they reduce opponents' number of three-point attempts, moreso than their percentages; the Spurs defense has operated like this for some time) and free-throw shooting.

The Sonics shot a surprisingly low 69.3% from the free-throw line during the preseason; several guys didn't match the kind of performance you'd expect based on their past performance. Carlesimo almost always ends practice by having the team shoot free throws, with the number of shooters determined by an observer. Today, he had each of the seven shooters take two free throws - and the team made all 14 of them.