Thunder vs. Spurs: Pregame Primer
Thunder (55-26, 23-17 road) vs. Spurs (65-15, 39-1 home)
Radio: WWLS The Sports Animal (98.1 FM, 640 AM, 1300 AM The Buzz Tulsa)
Time: 7:00 PM CST
Team Comparisons (per NBA.com/Stats)
- Offensive Rating: Thunder – 110. (2nd), Spurs – 108.5 (3rd)
Defensive Rating: Thunder – 103.0 (12th), Spurs – 96.5 (1st)
It’s finally here. The Oklahoma City Thunder have competed all season for this moment right here. The moment, where they can just rest all their starters and main reserves, and just enjoy a game in San Antonio. It is almost a certainty that the Spurs will be doing the same. Neither team has anything to play for and the only thing that could impact this game is an injury to a key player.
This is the fourth and final meeting of the season between the Thunder and Spurs. The Thunder leads the season series 2-1. In the two games in which the teams have been at full strength, the victor in each of the close games has gone to the home team. In their last meeting, the Spurs sat most of their starters, but the Spurs’ reserves made a game of it up until halftime. Then the Thunder adjusted in the second half and won 111-92.
The Spurs come into the game with the No. 2 record in the league at 65-15. They had their home win-streak snapped in their previous game against the Golden State Warriors. It was thought the Spurs would rest most of their starters tonight, but apparently, they will go into the game with a relatively full squad, minus Boris Diaw and Manu Ginobili.
3 Big Things1. Play Hard
The Thunder’s B-Team will likely face a lot of the Spurs starters. The possibility of them winning is low, but if they can play hard like the Spurs’ B-Team did in the last meeting, it’ll be a good confidence builder moving forward.2. Enes Kanter
This will be one of those games where we’ll see Kanter is an effect of Westbrook and Durant being on the floor with him, or whether Kanter is that good himself. The Spurs’ frontline is a lot tougher than the Trailblazer’s front line.3. Stay Healthy
Even though Durant, Westbrook, and Ibaka will be watching from their homes in Oklahoma City, it still will be important that the Thunder come out of San Antonio unscathed. An unfortunate injury to Steven Adams, Andre Roberson, Dion Waiters, or Kanter, and the Thunder could be in a world of hurt heading in the playoffs.
LaMarcus Aldridge – No Ibaka. No Durant. Adams and Kanter will get their cracks at him, but I think will kill the Thunder from the mid range in this game.
Onward to the playoffs……