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Preview 41 of 82: Thunder @ Spurs

Preview 41 of 82: Thunder @ Spurs

Time: 8:30 PM CST


Game Notes: Thunder / Spurs

Losers of two straight, the Oklahoma City Thunder (25-15) are in San Antonio tonight — taking on DeMar DeRozan and the Spurs (24-18) at the AT&T Center. The Spurs are 7-3 over their last 10 games and have climbed to seventh in the Western Conference. The Thunder remain third in the West despite going 5-5 over their last 10, leading the fourth-place Clippers by a full game.

Tip-off is at 8:30 PM CST and will be televised on TNT and Fox Sports Oklahoma. The Thunder are 1.5-point road favorites according to Odds Shark.

Injury Report


  • Alex Abrines: Out — Personal
  • Nerlens Noel: Out — Concussion
  • Andre Roberson: Out — Knee


  • Rudy Gay: Out — Wrist
  • Dejounte Murray: Out — Knee

Probable Starters

Spurs: Bryn Forbes, Derrick White, DeMar DeRozan, LaMarcus Aldridge, Jakob Poetl




Four Factors


What to Watch For

Thunder Rotation. With Nerlens Noel (concussion) and Alex Abrines (personal) unavailable, Billy Donovan will again be tasked with getting creative with the rotation. Abdel Nader should again see extended time behind Terrance Ferguson. As for Noel’s minutes, Patrick Patterson should see an opportunity at the five. It will be extremely difficult to replace what Noel provides — in fact, it’s not possible with the current roster.

Boards Bounce Back. Over the back-to-back losses to Washington and Minnesota, the Thunder have been out-rebounded by a combined total of 108-97 — and 31-17 on the offensive glass. The Spurs averaged 44.5 rebounds per game, which is good for 18th in the league. OKC has a chance to correct course against a team that isn’t known for owning the boards.

Tough Road Test. The Spurs are 17-5 at home this season — 14-2 against Western Conference opponents. Avoiding a three-game losing streak won’t be easy for the Thunder. They’ll need to play much sharper.

Slowing the Spurs. San Antonio is led by DeMar DeRozan, who comes in averaging 22.3 points and 6.1 rebounds per game. LaMarcus Aldridge — known Thunder killer — is putting up 19.8 points and 8.6 rebounds. Bryn Forbes is averaging 12.4 PPG and hitting 42.8 percent of his attempts from downtown. Derrick White has come on strong of late, averaging 13 points on 61 percent shooting over the last 10 games.

OKC All-Star Trio. The second return of All-Star fan voting was released today and the Thunder are well-represented. Paul George is third in the Western Conference frontcourt with 1.8 million votes. Russell Westbrook is fourth among guards with 1.5 million. Steven Adams is sixth in the frontcourt with more than 1 million votes. If the Thunder want to snap their slide and win in San Antonio, the OK3 (too soon?) will need to be at their best.