Preview 22 of 82: Spurs @ Thunder
Time: 6:00 PM CT
TV: NBA TV / Fox Sports Oklahoma
Radio: WWLS (98.1 FM OKC / 97.1 FM Tulsa)
Game Notes: Thunder
Fresh off Friday’s 111-107 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves, the 9-12 Oklahoma City Thunder plays host to the 15-7 San Antonio Spurs tonight at Chesapeake Energy Arena. The Thunder will look to build on its first crunch time win of the season — and will do so against a Spurs team that comes in severely short-handed.
San Antonio will be without LaMarcus Aldridge, Rudy Gay, Tony Parker and Kawhi Leonard — all sitting with ailments or for rest purposes. The Thunder should be able to capitalize and grab its second consecutive win, but San Antonio never goes down without a fight. Tip is at 6:00 PM CT on NBA TV and Fox Sports Oklahoma.
- LaMarcus Aldridge: Out — Rest
- Rudy Gay: Out — Heel
- Kawhi Leonard: Out — Quad
- Tony Parker: Out — Rest
- Derrick White: Probable — Wrist
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11/17: SAS 104, OKC 101 [BOX SCORE]
The San Antonio Attack. Playing without their top two scorers (Aldridge & Gay), the Spurs will likely turn to Pau Gasol and Danny Green on offense tonight. Gasol had 14 points and 8 rebounds on November 17, and Green contributed 17 points and 6 rebounds. Manu Ginobili is always dangerous as well — he’s coming off an 11 point, 7 rebound, 6 assist effort against Memphis on Friday night.
48 Minutes. It sounds like a broken record at this point, but the Thunder must find a way to compete for a full four quarters. Despite escaping Friday’s game with a win, OKC still built a 21 point lead and watched it disappear down the stretch. The Spurs don’t have their standard amount of weapons, but it’s still the Spurs. If the Thunder doesn’t close it out, San Antonio could very well steal one.
Russ and PG. The Thunder held a 32-15 advantage after the first quarter of November 17’s contest with the Spurs, but faltered down the stretch and ultimately lost the game. Russell Westbrook and Paul George combined to shoot 10/38 — 3/10 from deep — and will need to perform better tonight. (Carmelo Anthony was 9/17 in that game and led the Thunder with 20 points.)
Steven Adams Heat Check. Steven Adams had a career-high 27 points on Friday night, shooting a perfect 11/11 in the process. He had 16 points and 8 rebounds against the Spurs on November 17 and has historically performed well against San Antonio. He could be in line for another strong performance, and the Thunder should look to him early.