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Isaiah Joe Knows From Experience the Importance of Staying Present

The Oklahoma City Thunder are in a heated race atop the Western Conference but from top to bottom the team is taking on the identity of their coach.

As the Oklahoma City Thunder sit atop the Western Conference, this roster is taking on the identity of their head coach

Despite the success this season, turning in a 45-19 record, the Thunder have jockeyed for the first seed in the West all season long, currently clinging to a half-game lead. Just a game and a half separate the Thunder from the top seed to the third seed. With these scenarios changing almost daily, the Thunder continues to be present. Few understand the importance of this like sharpshooter Isaiah Joe.

“I can't speak for everybody else but I don't really talk about it. I've been on a team where we've been in the playoffs and got taken out early. I think we can lose sight on [getting] caught up in the playoffs and then by the time they come, even if you’re in, you're hitting you may not be ready because you haven't taken care of the business that's present. You haven't built a muscle to be able to succeed in the in the playoffs," Joe said following Tuesday's shootaround ahead of the Thunder's matchup with the Indiana Pacers. 

As inexperience has been touted as a negative for this Oklahoma City team, Joe has seen how high expectations and losing sight of the 82 games in front of you can alter a squad for the worse. 

Other Shoot Around notes: 

Jalen Williams was moving well at shoot around and going through a fairly normal post-shoot-around routine in the media viewing portion. Williams is tabbed as questionable with an ankle injury for tonight's game. 

Jaylin Williams has the second most assists to Joe this season, and has been used as a high-post playmaker in his time with the Thunder. The two have been teammates since high school, but Joe said this was a skill that really started to flourish at the University of Arkansas. 

The Oklahoma City Thunder take on the Indiana Pacers tonight in the Paycom Center in game three of a four game homestand. 

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