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Game Day #34: Lakers at Thunder

Los Angeles Lakers (20-13, 6-11 road) at Oklahoma City Thunder (26-7, 14-1 home)

 at 

Where: The ‘Peake!
When: 8:30 p.m.
TV:
 TNT (245 DirecTV, 31 Cox, 108 AT&T U-Verse, 138 Dish)
Online StreamHere.
RadioWWLS Sports Animal 98.1 FM/640AM/97.1 Tulsa
View from the EnemyHere.
Projected Lineups:

Thunder:
Lakers:

Last time: Oklahoma City thumped the Lakers in Los Angeles 120-106 last season. First meeting in 2011-2012

I would say this was the premiere battle of the night, but the Heat/Knicks game will take that honor with “Linsanity” taking center stage. (Okay, that’s our first and last Lin reference). However, this is a big game. Oklahoma City is the best home team in the league and the Lakers have won two in a row. Lakers tried to implode at Dallas in the final seconds last night but survived 96-91.

The Lakers really don’t have any guard help besides Kobe Bryant. Derek Fisher is old. Steve Blake really inconsistent. Last night’s 15 points by Fisher was a rare thing this season.

The Lakers can still win though. They play great defense even though they don’t score a lot of points. Lakers rank 23rd in points per game. Their defense though, ranks 6th in points allowed per game.

Oklahoma City punked the Celtics last night 119-104. The Thunder led by as many as 27 points in the third quarter. Kevin Durant had 28 points, Russell Westbrook had 31 points in the win.

Keys to the Game

Rebound
The Lakers are the best rebounding team in the league. They average 45.8 rebound per game. LA ranks just 12th in offensive rebounds, while OKC ranks 29th in allowing offensive rebounds. So, blocking out and grabbing rebounds will be very key tonight. Give the Lakers extra shots, could be their down fall.

Turnovers
The Lakers don’t force a lot of turnovers. They only force on average 12 per game. OKC did great in the first half of last night. They need to keep it up and not turn it over so much. A lot of turnovers are just OKC being aggresive. Personally, I can handle that.

Three-Point Shot
Lakers shot the ball from behind the arc well last night. It was key in their victory. Lakers are shooting 30.5% from three-point on the season. However, Los Angeles is shooting just  27.7% from behind the arc on the road. If they can play some perimeter defense against the Lakers, could be a long night for the Lake Show.

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