Game 17 Recap: Blazers (7-12) def. Thunder (6-11) 136-119
Official Box Score link
For most of this season, Thunder fans have been treated to one of the two best case scenarios for the long term prospects of this team: close, competitive, entertaining losses or therapeutic wins over the Warriors.
Tonight was only the second time (shout out to Baby Sabonis) in 17 games that OKC was blown out and not within striking distance on the final possession.
There isn’t much to take from this game other than the Blazers were Carolina Reaper levels hot. They were hot from the 3 point line. From midrange. From the foul line. At the rim. From the locker room. From Autzen Stadium. It didn’t matter, if anyone from Dame to Melo to Hassan Whiteside was shooting, the ball was going into the basket.
The numbers are just silly. The Blazers were a perfect 24 for 24 from the free throw line. They hit 14 of 30 3 point attempts. Rodney Hood scored 14 points on 6 shots, Carmelo Anthony scored 19 on 11 shots, Whiteside 21 on 13 shots. Oh, and Dame and CJ McCollum combined for a mere 49 on 31 shots.
Could the Thunder have played better defense? Absolutely. But even when OKC brought the D, the Blazers made contested baskets. I mean, Melo had his all-time best shooting percentage in a game, and he’s been playing since Elf hit movie theatres and Chappelle’s Show made its TV debut. Game, blouses.
The highlight for OKC tonight was Abdel Nader scoring a career high 23 points on a Blazers-ish 9 shot attempts. But when the most positive thing for the Thunder was a garbage time scoring savant, and you realize that tomorrow is Thanksgiving and The Irishman is on Netflix so nobody is going to want to read your game recap anyways, you just keep it short and sweet and move on to the next one.
- Good news for #TeamTank: this loss moved the Blazers in front of the Thunder in the Western Conference standings. Bonus: the Warriors finally won a game tonight, putting less distance between OKC and last (first?) place.
- There’s been a lot of buzz about the Blazers being a potential suitor for Danilo Gallinari. Some wondered if the Blazers’ losing skid would put an end to their pursuit of being a contender this season. Now with Portland playing better and a little two game win streak in hand, expect the Gallo trade talk to perk up around December 15th.
- Outside of Nader going NBA Jam in garbage time, the Thunder’s best player tonight was Chris Paul. Melo’s bestie scored 16 points and dished out 5 assists in only 25 minutes.
- Who else expected that CP3 half court heave to go in for the second consecutive game? He really nailed the exact halfcourt line too, in a very matter of fact MidFirst Bank $20,000 is on the line kind of way.
- If Chris Paul would just do the rip move on every Thunder possession, OKC would be headed to the 1 seed and the NBA Finals.
- The Thunder at 6-11 plays Friday against the 6-12 Pelicans in OKC. It’s the epitome of a win-win, as a win is fun and high fives, but a loss would move New Orleans ahead of the Thunder in the standings and put Oklahoma City right in the thick of the James Wiseman/Anthony Edwards/LaMelo Ball/Deni Avdija sweepstakes.
- Have a Happy Thanksgiving from all of us at Daily Thunder! We are thankful for your support and readership. And your comments.