Oklahoma City Thunder (23-16, 14-6 home) vs. Memphis Grizzlies (24-16, 10-9 away)
Wednesday, Jan. 11 :: 7:00 p.m. CST :: Chesapeake Energy Arena (18,203)
TV: ESPN (206 Directv, 28 Cox, 720 HD , 602 AT&T U-Verse, 140 Dish)
Online Stream: here.
Radio: WWLS Sports Animal 98.1 FM/640AM/97.1 Tulsa
View from the enemy: Here.
Line: Oklahoma City is a 4-point favorite. O/U is 204½
Notes: Thunder: here | Grizzlies: here
SETTING THE SCENE
- The Oklahoma City Thunder will try to exact revenge against the Memphis Grizzlies tonight at the Peake.
- Memphis thumped Oklahoma City 114-80 when Russell Westbrook was ejected.
- Oklahoma City bullied Chicago 109-94 on on Monday night.
- The Grizzlies beat the Jazz 88-79 on Sunday night.
FOLLOWING THE ACTION
- You can catch the radio on Oklahoma City’s WWLS, 98.1 FM. Matt Pinto will be your play-by-play voice. If you’re in Tulsa, catch it on 1450 AM.
- Brian Davis and Michael Cage call the game on the Thunder’s flagship station, Fox Sports Oklahoma. You can watch the game there, catch it on NBA League Pass, or use the Fox Sports App (If you’re in Oklahoma)
- Tonight’s game is on ESPN for those who aren’t inside the Thunder’s TV market.
SCOUTING THE GRIZZLIES
- The Memphis Grizzlies are 24-16 on the season, fifth in the Western Conference
- In their last 10 games, the Grizzlies are 6-4 and have won back-to-back games.
- The Thunder is 16-14 against the Grizzlies during the Oklahoma City era.
- Oklahoma City is 10-5 all-time at the Peake vs. Memphis.
- Memphis thumped the Thunder 114-80 on Dec. 19, 2016.
- The Thunder’s largest margin of victory over Memphis came on Dec. 8, 2015, where Oklahoma City prevailed by a score of 125-88 (37-point margin of victory).
- Meanwhile, the Thunder’s largest margin of defeat (34 points) vs. the Grizzlies occurred during a 80-114 loss on Dec. 19, 2016.
RUSSELL WESTBROOK TRIP-DUBS
- Russell Westbrook has 54 career triple-doubles, that’s best for sixth all-time.
- 16 of the 54 are against Houston, Orlando, Washington, and Philadelphia. He has four against each team.
- Russell Westbrook seven triple-doubles in a row this season is the most since 1989 when Jordan had seven in a row and 10 in 11 games.
- Oklahoma City is relatively healthy.
50 IS NIFTY
- On March 24, the Thunder claimed a 22-point home victory over the Jazz and in the process, OKC recorded the team’s 50th win of the season.
- Oklahoma City has now finished with a winning percentage of .610 (equivalent to 50 wins) six times dating back to the 2009-10 season.
- Only the San Antonio Spurs (seven seasons with .610 winning percentage), have reached that benchmark more during this period.
STILL GOOD ODDS
- According to Sportsbook, the Oklahoma City Thunder have the eighth best odds to win the Larry O’Brien trophy.
- They have the fifth best odds to win the Western Conference behind, the Clippers, Spurs, Rockets, and the Warriors.
- Oklahoma City travels to the Twin Cities to take on the T-Wolves in a Friday the 13th showdown.
- Oklahoma City is 2-0 against Minnesota this season.
- Minnesota is 12-26 on the season, 14th in the Western Conference.
KEYS TO THE GAME
Defend the rim
While the Thunder are one of the league’s best teams at scoring near the rim, the Memphis Grizzlies are dead last. They’re shooting only 52.3 percent. Cannot let Memphis beat you inside. They’re aging and they’re not as big of a physical threat as they used to be. Assert your will and you win.
The Grizzlies are one of the slowest teams in the league at just a shade over 95 possessions per contest. Oklahoma City is averaging 101 per game. Go fast and keep the Grizzlies on their toes. Memphis is already averaging 84 shots per contest, compared to Oklahoma City’s almost 87 per game. Three shots seems like so minuscule in the grand scheme of things, but that’s anywhere from 6-8 points.
PLAY WITHIN YOUR GAME
With the Westbrook ejection last time, the Thunder will be playing with a bit of a chip on their shoulder. They didn’t have Victor Oladipo and Cameron Payne, either. Oklahoma City needs to keep it level headed and play Thunder basketball. Oklahoma City can do it, we’ve seen it.