Oklahoma City Thunder (4-4, 2-2 home)

vs.

New Orleans Pelicans (4-5, 1-4 away)

Monday, November 5 :: 7:00 p.m. CST :: Chesapeake Energy Arena (18,203)
TV Coverage: FS Oklahoma (DirectTV 675, Cox 37, HD 722, Tulsa Cox 27)
Radio Coverage: 98.1 FM/640AM/97.1 Tulsa
View from the enemyHere.
Line: The Oklahoma City Thunder are a 2.5-point underdog. The over/under is 233.5.
Online StreamFS OK | WWLS Sports Animal | Live Stats | Twitter | Facebook
Game Notes: Thunder: here | Pelicans: here

SETTING THE SCENE

  • One of the hottest in the NBA hosts one of the coldest teams in the league. It’s a battle of teams going in opposite directions. The Thunder host the Pelicans in a game that could be imperative to seeding come April.
  • Oklahoma City has won four in a row, including a 134-111 blowout of the sad Washington Wizards on Friday, Nov. 2. Jerami Grant had a season high 22 points for the Thunder.
  • The Pelicans have lost five straight after starting out the season 4-0. Though, Anthony Davis hasn’t played in a couple of games, he’s expected to play tonight against the Thunder.
  • Oklahoma City is 8-4 against the Pelicans since 2015.

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.
  • Chris Fisher 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).

SCOUTING THE PELICANS

  • The New Orleans Pelicans went 48-34 last season, sixth in the Western Conference.
  • The Pelican’s win total predictions is 45.5, about seventh in the West playoff race.
  • This season, the Pelicans are 4-5, currently 10th in the West Playoffs.
  • New Orleans has lost five straight by an average of 13.0 points per game.
  • In the series between the Thunder and the Pelicans, Oklahoma City is 30-23 all-time.
  • Since the Thunder moved from Seattle, Oklahoma City is 22-13 against New Orleans.
  • When the games are played at the Peake, Oklahoma City holds a 12-6 advantage.
  • Over their last five at home against New Orleans, the Thunder are 4-1.
  • Last time they met in Oklahoma City, the Thunder lost to the Pelicans 114-100 on Feb. 2, 2018.
  • Anthony Davis leads the Thunder in four of the five major statistical categories. Jrue Holiday can step in at the assist category, averaging 8.2 per game.
  • INJURY REPORT:
    Anthony Davis (elbow sprain) is probable and should play tonight.
  • Darius Miller (quad contusion) is probable and should play.
  • Elfrid Payton (ankle sprain) is out.
  • The Thunder’s largest margin of victory over New Orleans came on Feb. 27, 2013, where Oklahoma City prevailed by a score of 119-74 (45-point margin of victory).
  • Meanwhile, the Thunder’s largest margin of defeat (25 points) vs. NOLA occurred during an 105-80 loss on Nov. 21, 2008.

THUNDER INJURY REPORT

  • Andre Roberson (ruptured patellar tendon) is out

NEXT UP

  • Oklahoma City host the LBJ-less Cleveland Cavaliers on Wednesday, Nov. 7 in Cleveland.
  • Then, Oklahoma City has to play the Rockets in the second night of a back-to-back on the Nov. 8.
  • They wrap up the week by playing the Mavericks on Saturday night in Dallas on Nov. 10.
  • The Thunder host the Suns for the second time on Monday, Nov. 12.



Three Keys to the Game

Shooting

Oklahoma City is 29th in field goal shooting. They’re 30th in three-point shooting. They’re 29th in free throw shooting. Find a way to put the ball in the hole and do it efficiently. Scoring is up across the board in the NBA and the Thunder are lagging behind because they can’t score. They can’t make free throws. They’ve been doing a better job during their win streak but there are still issues. They’ll continue to get better if they are going to keep this win streak going.

Free throws

While we mentioned this in the previous one, it’s still key. When you’re shooting less than 67 percent from the line, something NBA teams practice religiously, it’s quite unforgivable for the Thunder to be shooting such a desperate percentages. They have to make their free throws. That starts with Paul George and Russell Westbrook.

Stop fouling

The Thunder commit more fouls than any team in the NBA. They’re committing 26.0 fouls per game, which leads to 30.8 free throws per game, most in the NBA. However, over their four-game win streak, the Thunder are a little bit better, only 25th in fouling. They’re only allowing 27.5 free throws per game during the winning streak.

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Chuck Chaney

Founder & Editor-in-Chief.
Member of the Professional Basketball Writers Association.