Kendrick Perkins needs to be more physical.

Never thought I'd be writing those words, especially not during the playoffs.

The Thunder big man is the quintessential tough guy. He's got the intimidating scowl, the bulging muscles and the menacing intensity, and while we've seen all of it repeatedly in regular-season games since he was traded from Boston to Oklahoma City, what we've really been waiting for was the playoffs.

This was when Perk was supposed to take it up another notch. He was going to be that missing piece, that physical presence, that playoffs difference-maker.

Then during Game 1 against the Nuggets, there were times when you wondered if Thunder coach Scott Brooks should stick with Nazr Mohammed and leave Perkins on the bench.

Other than his tip-in that shouldn't have been — a blown basket-interference call that enraged the Nuggets on Sunday night and prompted an NBA statement Monday afternoon — Perkins was largely an afterthought.

Not exactly what we expected from Playoff Perk.

"Probably didn't have one of my best games," Perkins said Monday afternoon.

His frustration was obvious to everyone inside the Oklahoma City Arena. Several times, he furrowed his brow or shook his head in disgust.