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- New Orleans general manager Dell Demps was given a contract extension, the team announced Friday morning. Coach Monty Williams signed his extension in August, meaning the two of the organization’s top members should be around for awhile. The move gives the franchise stability in those key positions that has been missing for a few years as the ownership situation was being determined. “They’re certainly risk takers giving us extensions the way they have,” Williams said. “But it shows they believe in our plan and now it’s up to us. That’s what you want as a coach.”
- The Hornets’ Greivis Vasquez sprained his ankle in Wednesday night’s loss at Houston. But the guard went through shoot around Friday morning and Williams said he appeared to handle the movement fine. “Greivis is a tough kid,” Williams said. “To see him go down like that makes you think he’s going to be out for a couple of games. He bounced right back and had no residual effects at all.”
- New Orleans’ expected starters: Al-Farouq Aminu, Anthony Davis, Robin Lopez, Austin Rivers, Vasquez.
- Oklahoma City enters the game two days removed from a 10-point home defeat to Memphis. But there might be no team better coming off a loss than the Thunder. Since the 2010-11 season, Oklahoma City is 37-9 coming off of a loss, including 2-0 this season.
- Thunder coach Scott Brooks said Kevin Martin won’t be breaking into the starting lineup any time soon. Martin, who came to Oklahoma City in a trade with Houston, is averaging 16 points and 2.8 rebounds in 29.8 minutes off the bench. “Kevin obviously has been a starter in this league for a lot of years and this is an adjustment,” Brooks said. “I think he’s doing a great job making that adjustment. His minutes are not going to be too far from starter minutes.”
- Oklahoma City’s expected starting lineup: Kevin Durant, Serge Ibaka, Kendrick Perkins, Thabo Sefolosha, Russell Westbrook
– Bradley Handwerger