Serge Ibaka complained last season about his limited offensive role with the Thunder. This report is about his former coach clarifying something his role on the team before.
Thunder coach Billy Donovan recently had an interview podcast with Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical. He told Wojnarowski his reason for Serge’s varying role on offense last season, which he believed that he managed well.
“As a coach, I never really worried about that, because I do think deep down in Serge’s heart, he always plays and has wanted to compete to win,” Donovan said.
But Ibaka expressed his frustration about his small offensive role during the team’s win over Toronto Raptors last season.
“You play so hard on defense, then you come to offense and you’re going to be out there in the corner for 4, 5, 6, sometimes 8 minutes and you don’t touch the ball. We human, man. It’s hard,” Serge told The Oklahoman.
Donovan chose to be quiet on Ibaka’s complaint until his recent interview with The Vertical.
“I think it’s only normal as you’re a player, and you’re a really good player like Serge, is to want to have a bigger role, want to have bigger responsibilities,” the OKC coach said.
After Ibaka said those words, there are NBA rumors that swirled about his possible trade to another team. Those NBA rumors came to fruition as he has then moved to another team this offseason.
Team officials may not directly say it, but it looked like Ibaka’s disgust over his role affected their decision to trade him.
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