"Oh yeah. I like that. I know I'm going to be on him at some point. I've just got to be ready. It's always fun to play against the best. It lets you know where your game is."
Weaver's first season in the NBA has been similar to his first season at WSU -- too many losses on a young team and, at times, limited minutes on the court for him. Weaver's playing time has increased significantly in recent weeks – he's already logged more minutes this month than he did in November and December combined. He logged a season-high 23 minutes in a game against the Clippers on Friday.
And the Thunder has made progress after a dreadful 2-24 start that cost head coach P.J. Carlesimo his job at the 1-12 point.
|WEAVER'S PLAYING TIME HAS SOARED IN RECENT WEEKS.|
"I'm improving," Weaver said. "The team is getting better."
Still, the Thunder has already lost one more game than the Cougars lost in Weaver's last final three college seasons combined. One year after helping WSU reach the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament, Weaver said the pain of losing has been lessened somewhat by the college-like camaraderie of the young Thunder.
"We actually live -- most of the players -- in (suburban) Edmond, Okla., where our practice facility is," Weaver said. "A lot of us go out and eat together … and we go to teammates' houses, little things like that.
"We just hang out, relax, watch TV. They have friends come over, and we chill out. When we do good, we try to relax and have fun when we can. We're all pretty close, which is cool, especially being on a team where we used to struggle a lot. You might have a situation where nobody likes each other, but we all get along really well."
Weaver, who lives by himself in a rented house, said Oklahoma City is "a real nice city with a nice downtown area with a lot of restaurants." The transplanted Seattle SuperSonics regularly fill the 19,136-seat Ford Center in the team's first season in Oklahoma City.
"It's been great," Weaver said. "The fans in Oklahoma City are unbelievable.
"We have sellout crowds just about every night. With that kind of support, it's hard not to go out and play hard."
Weaver, who grew up in a "working-class" family in Beloit, Wis., will make more than $800,000 this season. That's almost double the NBA minimum of $442,114.
"It's one of those things, I'm like, ‘What do I DO with this thing?'" Weaver said about his twice-monthly pay checks.
Weaver said he hasn't bought too many items for himself, but he did surprise his parents by presenting them with a new car when they visited Oklahoma City last month.
You can't blame Weaver for wanting to save money, because he knows he's going to be shelling out plenty for tickets when the Thunder makes its first appearance in Milwaukee on April 11. Beloit is 75 miles southwest of Milwaukee.
"I know it's going to be crazy when that time comes," he said. "There's going to be about a hundred phone calls for tickets."
Ah, the price of fame. Weaver is dealing with it just fine. "I'm living the dream," he said. "I'm doing what I want to do."
NOTABLE WEAVER NOTES:
CF.C caught up recently with two of Weaver's classmates at Washington State. Click below for the latest on Derrick Low and Robbie Cowgill ...
-- Low honing skills in France, watches Cougs from afar
-- Cowgill finds his calling, keeps eye on Cougs