Berry Tramel (NewsOK) looks at the Vegas win odds: “A few things to remember. This isn’t a prediction. An NBA team or two will reach the extremes on both ends. But Vegas can’t account for that. It can’t predict that the star-studded Warriors will win 69 games. Few teams in NBA history will do that. Vegas can’t predict that Atlanta will win 14 games. Few teams in NBA history will do that. The Warriors might very well approach 70 wins again, and the Hawks might threaten the all-time worst record. But this isn’t a prediction. This is a process by which Las Vegas tries to remove as much money from your wallet as it can.”
David Aldridge (NBA.com) says Oklahoma City had the best offseason: “This is real simple: with Roberson on the court last year, OKC’s opponent offensive rating was 99.2; when he was off, it was 110.7. The Thunder was a near-elite defensive unit when Roberson played and was awful when he didn’t. His Real Defensive Plus-Minus, per ESPN.com, was 4.34, second only to Utah’s Rudy Gobert (5.06). So when Roberson ruptured his patellar tendon in late January, the Thunder’s ability to use George as a weakside defender who could freelance and use his length to create deflections and turnovers (because Roberson had the strong side absolutely locked down) went away.” Continue reading NTTB Thunder Rumblings – 07 August 2018→
The Thunder website looks at the transformations the Chesapeake Arena has taken over the 10-year run of the Thunder: “It was the centerpiece of renovations that took place in the months that followed the inaugural season of Thunder Basketball – the new “Thunder Vision” scoreboard. At 31 feet tall and 35 feet wide, it was impossible to miss, offering 10 video screens and an LED ring. A unique feature of the scoreboard was the tilted video panels on the bottom of the scoreboard, a first in sports with the goal to provide easier scoreboard viewing for players, coaches, referees and fans in the lower seat levels.”
Royce Young (ESPN) on Paul George’s knee scope that occurred yesterday: “George dealt with knee soreness for much of last season, sitting out a game on Dec. 29 because of it. According to a press release, “the Thunder, George and his representation collectively determined” the procedure be done by Dr. Neal ElAttrache in Los Angeles, with Thunder medical personnel present.”
Nick Gallo (OKCThunder.com) previews Game 6: “As a coach you always go into a game with a plan of what you want to do, but more often than not those plans change,” Head Coach Billy Donovan said. “You always have to make decisions for what’s best for the team at that point in time.”
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Line: OKC -4.5 | O/U – 207.5
Five Things For This Game
1. Again, Injuries
After an incredible Thunder playoff debut, Paul George suffered a hip contusion in the 2nd quarter on a hard fall. He dusted the fall off and went on to play most of the game after that. But you could tell the injury started bothering him late in the 2nd half and he had to be taken out with about 2 minutes left in the game to receive treatment on the sidelines. Continue reading Jazz vs. Thunder Preview (Game 2)→
Nick Gallo (OKCThunder.com) recaps the Thunder’s win over the New Orleans Pelicans: “The Thunder had three previous cracks at this type of game – a scrap-and-claw battle between two Western Conference foes in practically must-win situations to secure playoff berths and positioning. Head Coach Billy Donovan and his squad made sure not to let this fourth one slip away, getting high quality shots on most possessions and making enough defensive stops to seal it. “At this point we gotta start shaping up and playing better towards this final stretch, and I thought we did that to close the game out,” said forward Paul George.”
The Oklahoma City Thunder head into the March 1st buy-out deadline with an empty roster spot and several needs. Before we head any further into this article, there are a few things you might need to know about the buy-out market. First off, no team is acquiring a superstar via the buy-out market. In fact, it’s always questionable whether the player being obtained will even be that much of a difference maker. Buy-out signings are usually veterans the acquiring team hopes will make a small incremental difference in the positive direction for and during a playoff run.
For the Thunder, their recent buy-out signings over the past few seasons have been Norris Cole, Nazr Mohammed, Caron Butler, and Derek Fisher. These were veterans that weren’t necessarily useless, but also weren’t game changers moving forward. Fisher filled a role as a back-up point guard during the Finals run of 2012. Butler was important in the first round series against the Memphis Grizzlies in 2014, but his importance decreased with each successive series. Mohammed was more of a locker room/veteran presence during Durant’s final season in Oklahoma City. And last season, Cole was brought in be a better option at back-up point guard than Semaj Christon, but neither totally worked out. Continue reading Sales Rack Shopping: The Thunder and the buy-out market→
With their minds on their fallen comrade and playing their third game in four nights, the Oklahoma City Thunder took to the court on Sunday with heavy legs and heavier hearts. If their previous meeting with the Philadelphia 76ers was any indicator, the Thunder knew this would be a 48 minute (or 63 minute) kind of game.
A lot of the first quarter was focused on the interactions between Joel Embiid and Russell Westbrook, who had a little bit of a spat at the end of their first meeting in Philadelphia earlier this season. It didn’t disappoint early on as Embiid had a clean drive to the basket after losing Steven Adams on the perimeter and had only Westbrook in between himself and the basket. Westbrook tried to take a charge, but Embiid went up and created a poster. The rest of the first quarter was back and forth affair with the Thunder taking a two point lead heading into the second. Paul George paced the Thunder in the first frame with 13 points on 4/8 shooting from the field. Continue reading Thunder beat the Sixers 122-112 on the second night of a back to back→