Author - Chuck Chaney

Bulls Meltsdown 12.17.18

  • they gotta be in full revenge mode after dropping a game to us last week, especially Russ after being blocked by our rook.
  • Away game against a good western team that we beat just 10 days ago? Yeah, this is a 25+ pt loss.
  • This ain’t going to be pretty. Anything better than a 20 point loss is a moral victory.
  • lol okc starting off the game laying some impressive bricks.
  • Dunn needs to chill the f out. He could easily have 2 fouls rn.
  • The bulls started good let’s see if the spurs win turns the corner for them
  • What the hell did Dunn just do to Aquaman? Crushed him and walked away like a bada$$
  • Man, I hate Justin Holiday…
  • are you kidding me Lauri? Come on dude attack the **** rim.
  • I strongly dislike every player on the floor other than Bobby.
  • Adams out there giving moving, at a sprint screens on Lopez….yet Dunn gets offensive fouls
  • WTF is lopez doing, you can’t flash for a entry pass then bail that soon. He is checked out for half his stints on the floor.
  • I thought we were done with the Cameron Payne Experience.
  • Payne should be on the bench permanently
  • what a garbage possession, good job Payne!
  • This team sucks so **** bad.
  • These refs are pissing me off
  • The Thunder don’t need official help to beat the Bulls….
  • I’d pay 100 dollars to punch Lopez or Payne in the face.
  • payne almost blew an wide open layup…Nothing comes easy for this guy…
  • Payne is the leading cause of the opiod epidemic…
  • Schroder is annoying. We never have anyone who can stop him.
  • I’m confused why Robin Lopez touches the ball more on offense than Lauri.
  • Westbrook looks like he’s getting tired, we’ve been all over him great team game on him.
  • We should stop putting Holiday on George.
  • Paul George is like I don’t have to play defense as Lavine is out so I can just have fun on offense as Arci can’t guard him or Holiday.
  • must be nice to have good players.
  • And just like that its 20
  • remember when boylen said we would start playing winning basketball?
  • what is lauri doing? he looks awful.
  • Archie on Westbrook is a terrible gameplan
  • Damn Grant… That was a nasty dunk
  • Lopez just walked away from Adams in the paint and gave up a dunk….
  • i turned it off, unwatchable, tank on.
  • This is probably the only season that I have more “I’m glad, I’m going to work than finish a Bulls game” day. lol
  • Feel like Westbrook main goal is to get triple doubles
  • Hell watching Lopez beat the piss out of someone would be more entertaining than this game.
  • Am I the only one that hoped a fan would say something resulting in Payne going in the stands and being suspended for the remainder of the season?
  • Payne is the worst player I’ve ever seen
  • Why is Payne even playing? He has no future here. Play Hutch.
  • Maybe Payne can be ejected,that’s the only way he won’t playing big minutes for the Bulls
  • The Bulls are coaching apparently requires having one of, or both Archie and Jughead on the floor at all times
  • Robin is one of the few guys on this team with balls. Love that guy.
  • Cam Payne fouling out is happiness…
  • The Bulls are painful to watch.
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Thunder Game Day #29: vs. Chicago Bulls

Oklahoma City Thunder (18-10, 11-3 home)

at

Chicago Bulls (7-23, 3-12 away)

Monday, December 17 :: 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 13-point favorites. The over/under is 212.5.
Online StreamFS OK | WWLS Sports Animal | Live Stats | Twitter | Facebook
Game Notes: Thunder: here | Bulls: here

SETTING THE SCENE

  • Oklahoma City responded to losing three-out-of-four games with an impressive win over the Los Angeles Clippers on Saturday. What was most impressive about it: they won against a winning record team, on the second night of a back-to-back.
  • The Thunder currently sit comfortably in the third seed in the Western Conference playoff race. They’re a full game up on the Los Angeles Lakers and trail the Golden State Warriors by a full game for second place.
  • Coming into tonight’s game, the Chicago Bulls did the unthinkable. They won a basketball game in the second half while being down 21. The Bulls beat the San Antonio Spurs on Saturday night after trailing by 21 in the third quarter. It was Chicago’s first win since beating the Thunder a week or so ago.
  • Speaking of that… The Bulls stunned Oklahoma City on Dec. 7, winning 114-112. Oklahoma City never could find their rhythm and players like Zach LaVine went bananas.

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 BULLS

  • The Chicago Bulls are currently 6-23 on the season, 13th in the Western Conference.
  • In their last 10 games, the Bulls are 2-8. With their only two wins being over San Antonio and Oklahoma City.
  • In their last 10 road games, it gets worse. Chicago is only 1-9.
  • All-time against the Bulls, the Oklahoma City Thunder are 72-74.
  • Since relocation, the Thunder are 12-8 against Chicago.
  • When the two throw down at Chesapeake Energy Arena, Oklahoma City is 6-4 all-time.
  • In the post-KD era, the Thunder are 3-2 against the Bulls, with 1-1 home record.
  • INJURY REPORT
    Zach LaVine (left ankle) is out.
    Jabari Parker (illness) is questionable.
    Denzel Valintine (left ankle) is out.
  • The Thunder’s largest margin of victory over Chicago came on Oct. 28, 2017, where Oklahoma City prevailed by a score of 101-69 (32-point margin of victory).
  • Meanwhile, the Thunder’s largest margin of defeat (28 points) vs. the Bulls occurred during an 128-100 loss on Feb. 1, 2017.

THUNDER INJURY REPORT

  • Andre Roberson (ruptured patellar tendon) is out.

UNIFORM WATCH

NEXT UP

  • Oklahoma City then will go on the road for seven out of the next nine games, starting in Sacramento on Dec. 19.
  • Oklahoma City will play in Utah on Dec. 19.
  • They’ll return home for a one game battle against the Minnesota Timberwolves. Then, Oklahoma City will play on Christmas Day against the Houston Rockets.



Three Keys to the Game

Fast Break points

Oklahoma City needs to turn up the pace against Chicago. The Bulls are in the bottom third of fast break points are 5-5 when they win the fast break battle. The Thunder are 14-6 when they win the fast break battle. It’s imperative the Thunder are able to use their defensive prowess to win this battle.

Free throws

Oklahoma City dropped in the free throw rankings, they’re 29th in free throw shooting at 70.3 percent. Oklahoma City has to make free throws if they’re going to win a game, let alone a championship. If they can get over 75 percent, this game is done for. That starts with Russell Westbrook and Steven Adams, the two who’ve been struggling the most. Oklahoma City is shooting over 75 percent in victories. They’re only 63.9 percent in losses.

Bench

The Thunder’s bench has become super consistent but the points are showing it. That’s fine with the injuries the Thunder have experienced but the bench has to produce some points. When the Bulls bench is outscoring their opponents bench, Detroit is 3-2. Oklahoma City is 10-6 when they win the bench battle.

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Thunder picks up Billy Donovan contract option

With the Thunder sitting with the sixth best record in basketball, the Oklahoma City Thunder have picked up the 2019-20 contract option on head coach Billy Donovan.

Donovan is four years into his first contract with the Thunder worth $30 million. They picked up the fifth year on his original deal, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.

Donovan is 168-106 as the head coach of the Thunder. He’s been to the Western Conference Finals once and has a 14-15 playoff record. Donovan is the fourth winningest coach with same team over his four years, behind Kerr, Popovich and Stevens.

Thunder fans been short fused with the former Florida Gator head coach as the team started 0-4. However, the Thunder have reeled off one of the better records since, going 18-6 since their rough start. However, there are still folks who would want to see a coaching change.

Donovan was hired in May of 2015 after the Thunder missed the playoffs for only the second time in franchise history. Scott Brooks was let go and Donovan was hired from Florida. Donovan’s hire was questioned by many as he appears at times to be a clone of Scott Brooks. Donovan, 53, has his differences. His ability to adjust at key moments are why the Thunder the best third quarter team in the NBA. It’s fueling their large record since their bad star.

The timing didn’t help the Thunder following, in Kevin Durant’s last season, and Durant’s appeasement of Brooks as a coach, stoked fire to one of the reasons why Durant bailed for Golden State.

Though the Thunder are loyal to a fault. As Brooks should’ve been let go a season before when the Thunder didn’t meet expectations with the best record in basketball. However, they’ll give Donovan his full contract’s worth. With the Thunder in the upper half of the NBA’s echelon, will Donovan get Oklahoma City to those vital wins? That remains to be seen but the Thunder have faith he can do it.

Donovan coached at the University of Florida for 20 seasons, winning two national championships and had multiple Final Four appearances.

The Thunder play the Chicago Bulls tonight at 7 p.m. and with the new contract, maybe we’ll see a reinvigorated Donovan under suit and tie.

 

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Paul George, Thunder beat Clippers 110-104

If you never watched the Oklahoma City before, you would assume this is Paul George’s team. The three-spot dropped 33 points en route to the Thunder beating the Los Angeles Clippers 110-104 on Saturday night.

Oklahoma City improved to 18-10 on the season as the Thunder are now a third of the way through the schedule.

The Thunder are now 3-1 on the second night of a back-to-back.

It was the fourth time in seven December games George scored at least 30 points. He’s averaging 29.1 points this month while shooting 52 percent from the field.

“I thought they came back really focused and ready to play tonight,” Billy Donovan said.

Oklahoma City trailed for only a second, with Danilo Gallinari hitting a jumper to give the Clippers (17-12) a 2-0 lead early. However, Oklahoma City would rattle off six straight to lead for the rest of the contest.

It was the Oklahoma City defense that led the charge. They forced 26 turnovers, the most for any Thunder opponent this season. It was just a suffocating style the Clippers had no response for. Russell Westbrook had six steals.

“When we defend like that, we’re the best team in the league,” Westbrook said. “We have to defend to win.”

Westbrook finished with 13 points, nine rebounds, 12 assists and six steals. He shot 4-of-17 but as stated, did more as his offensive side continues to struggle. He also made 2-of-3 at the free throw line.

Oklahoma City already led by 11 at halftime. The NBA’s best third quarter team did it again as they popped the Clippers repeatedly in the third quarter, led by George. He scored nine points in the frame and the Thunder led by as many as 17 in the quarter to give them the best cushion.

“Each game is a battle of its own,” George said. “It’s a chance for us to grow. We lost two straight, and it was good for us to come home and get one [a win]. That was big for us, not necessarily the win over the opponent.”

Though, the Clippers didn’t go away, they were able to pull within six with a minute left but the Thunder did what they needed to seal the game. Unlike in Denver where the Nuggets were able to put the game out of reach.

Oklahoma City will now host the Chicago Bulls on Monday night at the Peake. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m. We’ll have your game day coverage as always on our social media channels.

Keys to the Game

Make Free throws: B

I know I shouldn’t be giving a 70 percent free throw shooting night a B but the Thunder feel as if they’re finally figuring out that free throw shooting thing that seems to have bugged them so much. 75 percent. That’s all any one is asking for. We know we’re not hitting 80 percent. That’s fine. Let’s be average. That’s all.

Share the ball: A+

The Thunder did a great job getting involved. Oklahoma City dished out 26 assists en route to the victory. Westbrook had 12 and Dennis Schröder had four off the bench. When the Thunder share like this and get multiple people involved, Oklahoma City goes bananas and wins, most of the time.

Russell Westbrook: C

Like, no one knows what’s going on with Westbrook on the shooting part of his game. It’s the only thing missing from another MVP like season. He’s being a defensive beast. He leads the league in assists. He’s the best rebounding guard NBA history. Something is wrong and it appears Westbrook doesn’t even know what it is yet.

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4 Thoughts (12-14-18) Nuggets 109, Thunder 98

1. For the first time this season I’m feeling a little frustration and disappointment in the outcome of a game. The loss at Sacramento had me feeling similarly, but that was still really early. Considering we lost Wed in NOLA and considering we lost once already to Denver, I thought this game tonight took on a dash of added importance. I leave it as a “dash” understanding that it is still just mid-December and assigning too much meaning to any one game is a bit silly at this juncture. But I did take this one a little more seriously and the result has me more frustrated than your typical loss. Russ completely overreacted at the end of the game to Murray indicating to me that he is also feeling the frustration.

2. When you remove yourself from your comfort zone it’s not necessarily easy to just find a new one. I know a lot of people are wondering if what’s “wrong” with Russ right now is a sign of physical decline. I really don’t think so. I believe this is a mental and emotional issue. Based on how he has approached the game this year I think it is 100% clear that he is making a concerted effort to change the way he plays basketball. The result has been a ton more room for PG, Adams, and Dennis to roam. The Thunder do not simply stand around and wait for Russ to save them anymore. Their effort is high and consistent on both ends of the floor. Players and the ball move more freely than they have in the past. Roles are far more defined and guys are much more settled in. Except one. I just don’t think Russ has found where he fits yet. Chauncey Billups said it several times on the broadcast tonight: he wondered aloud why Russ wasn’t being more aggressive. He said he felt it was time for Russ to push the issue. And therein lies the problem. It’s not necessarily some easy switch he can flip. It’s not like he always has the perfect answer as to when he needs goes green light and when he goes red light. I think what we are seeing is Russ getting stuck in that awkward moment when the light is yellow and you aren’t sure if you need to floor it or hit the brakes. In that situation I always feel like I’m damned if I do and damned if I don’t. Ultimately, I think this will work out. PG is playing like an MVP. Adams is playing like an All-Star. Dennis is playing like a Sixth Man candidate. Thunder have the best D in the league. The one thing that isn’t on par (yet) is their leader. He is doing everything he can right now to do things the right way. He’s probably trying TOO hard. I think this is just something you wait out. If it still looks the same in March, then we have a real problem.

3. The one thing we can’t wait out is the free throw crisis. And yes, it’s a crisis. For the way THIS team plays, missing free throws at this rate is not acceptable. It will sink them. Thunder played the absolute “right” way tonight. The only took 19 three’s and they made a higher percentage than the Nuggets. Thunder were pretty aggressive pushing the ball into the paint. But they missed twelve free throws. Denver missed one. It’s a huge problem. Thunder are the most physical and athletic team in the league. And they don’t shoot it well from deep. Therefore, they MUST cash in at the line. I can accept that Adams is going to be a little subpar from the line. That’s OK from your bruising center. But PG, Russ, and Dennis need to be money. All the time. Grant needs to be better. Diallo and TFerg combined to go 0-4. You just can’t have that crap. The problem with free throw woes is that there isn’t really a “solution.” Practicing more may not matter at all. Free throws are very much a mental element of the game. The entire team knows they are struggling from the line and then it becomes a source of tension. A “here we go again” type of thing with each miss. For me, it starts with Russ. He just HAS to figure it out. Hovering around 60% is nonsense. I honestly think it was the deciding factor in the game tonight. Thunder plAyed hard. They tried to grind that thing out. Just left too many points at the line. It has to change or it will continue to cost them wins.

4. I think we have hit our first speed-bump of the season. After winning 16 of 19 games, the Thunder have now lost 3 of 4. Two of those three could have been won with a shot at the end. And tonight was in doubt with 2:00 to go. I don’t consider this small skid to be a major eye-opener, but they need to squash is quickly. If they win tomorrow and go 2-2 for the week that’s not a disaster. I’d consider it a mild disappointment, but nothing more than that. If they lose at home to the Clippers tomorrow I think that’s when you start to writhe in your seat just a bit and feel a little antsy. The back to back won’t be an excuse— not when you are coming off of two losses in a row. They have failed so far this year against the Nuggets, who now have the best record in the West. The Clippers have also been a West leader for most of this year so it would behoove the Thunder to take care of business and not turn this week into a a true slide.

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Thunder fall 109-98 in disappointing fashion

In a game in which the Thunder never really led the short handed Denver Nuggets sent the Thunder back to the NBA’s reality with a 109-98 loss on Friday night.

The loss is Oklahoma City’s third in their last four games and their second straight. The worst part about the losses? Two have come against really quality competition and the other was a horrible loss to probably the NBA’s worst team, the Chicago Bulls.

Oklahoma City never found their rhythm all game long. They fell behind early and by a large margin. It was due to the hot shooting of the Nuggets. The Nuggets hit their first six threes, putting Oklahoma City behind by double digits in the first quarter. The Thunder never recovered.

If we’re putting immediate blame on a Thunder loss, it’s going to be their inability to make free throws. Oklahoma City shot 17-of-29 from the free throw line (58.6 percent). It’s the third time this season Oklahoma City failed to shoot at least 60 percent from the free throw line and it killed them.

You make half those free throws and how you manage the end of the game changes. Instead of being down half the points in the first half. You’re not digging yourself such a hole.

While the Thunder gave it their best effort behind Paul George’s 32 points, it was also the lack of defense in the Mile High City that was the most concerning. Sure, Nikola Jokic is a phenomenal player, He pulled down 15 rebounds, including some really key tip outs. They were the killer. While the Thunder continue to try to rely on their athleticism and not their fundamentals in times where it’s the most key, it led the Nuggets to tip out missed shots for wide open threes.

We’re not even getting into how Russell Westbrook hasn’t been himself and we have no real explanation why. Well, him missing contested late game shots that he probably shouldn’t have taken is himself, but we miss the Westbrook that would take over games.

For whatever it is, the Thunder are slouching at the wrong time. Fan base can see it. I’m sure the players can see it, too. Though, everyone was melting down over an 0-4 start and look where the Thunder are now. They’re still third in the Western Conference with another tilt against a potential playoff contender on Saturday night, the LA Clippers. Win that and everyone chills out for a minute.

Oklahoma City (17-10) has a difficult next 15 games up. While only six are teams with winning records. They play San Antonio twice, Dallas twice, The Clippers, at Portland, at Lakers, at Houston, at Utah , and at Sacramento a place Oklahoma City has already lost this season. The schedule is getting brutal for the Thunder. They have to find a way to go any where from 8-7 to 11-4 over the next 15 games. You’re going to win some games you probably shouldn’t and lose games you shouldn’t. If you can keep your playoff position as they flip into the new year.

The Thunder will try to forget this loss immediately as they have a home SEGABABA against the LA Clippers Saturday at 8 p.m. on FS Oklahoma.

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Thunder Game Day #27: at Denver Nuggets

Oklahoma City Thunder (17-9, 7-6 away)

at

Denver Nuggets (18-9, 10-3 home)

Friday, December 14 :: 9:00 p.m. CST :: Pepsi Center (20,491)
TV Coverage: FS Oklahoma (DirectTV 675, Cox 37, HD 722, Tulsa Cox 27)
TV Coverage: ESPN (DirectTV 206, Cox 29, HD 1300, Tulsa Cox HD 1025)
Radio Coverage: 98.1 FM/640AM/97.1 Tulsa
View from the enemyHere.
Line: The Oklahoma City Thunder are a 2-point favorites. The over/under is 218.5.
Online StreamFS OK | WWLS Sports Animal | Live Stats | Twitter | Facebook
Game Notes: Thunder: here | Nuggets: here

SETTING THE SCENE

  • The Oklahoma City Thunder are setting up for a big divisional showdown against the No. 1 team in the Western Conference, the Denver Nuggets.
  • The Thunder already lost to the Nuggets once this season. So, tonight’s showdown in the Mile High City will be even bigger for the Thunder.
  • Oklahoma City is coming off a 118-114 loss to the New Orleans Pelicans on Wednesday night.
  • The Thunder are 7-3 in their last 10 games and have lost back-to-back road games.
  • The Nuggets are facing a slew of injuries and are trying to hold onto first place in the Western Conference.

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).
  • Tonight’s game is on ESPN. Dave Pasch, Doris Burke, and Tom Rinaldi will have your call for the WorldWide Leader.

SCOUTING THE NUGGETS

  • The Denver Nuggets 18-9 on the season, best in the Western Conference.
  • In their last 10 games, the Nuggets are 8-2, including four straight at home.
  • The Nuggets are currently percentage points better than the Warriors and Thunder for first place in the Western Conference.
  • In their last game, Denver beat the Memphis Grizzlies 105-99 on Wednesday night. It ended a two-game losing streak for the Nuggets.
  • Oklahoma City is 98-80 all-time against the Denver Nuggets. That includes the time spent in Seattle and Oklahoma City.
  • Since the Thunder relocated from Seattle, Oklahoma City is 21-19 against Denver.
  • When Oklahoma City is playing at the Pepsi Center, they are 7-11 all-time.
  • The Thunder lost both games in the Mile High City last season by an average of 7.0 points per game.
  • INJURY REPORT:
    Will Barton (right hip) is out.
    Gary Harris (right hip) is out.
    Paul Millsap (fractured toe) is out.
    Michael Porter Jr. (back surgery) is out.
    Isaiah Thomas (right hip) is out.
    Jarred Vanderbilt (foot) is out.
  • The Thunder’s largest margin of victory over Denver came on Feb. 22, 2015, where Oklahoma City prevailed by a score of 119-94 (25-point margin of victory).
  • Meanwhile, the Thunder’s largest margin of defeat (29 points) vs. the Nuggets occurred during a 119-90 loss on March 3, 2010

THUNDER INJURY REPORT

  • Andre Roberson (ruptured patellar tendon) is out.

UNIFORM WATCH

NEXT UP

  • The Thunder host the Clippers on Saturday, Dec. 15.
  • Then, they’ll play the Bulls in a rematch on Dec. 17 at 7 p.m.
  • Oklahoma City then will go on the road for seven out of the next nine games, starting in Sacramento on Dec. 19.



Three Keys to the Game

Fast Break points

Oklahoma City needs to turn up the pace against Detroit. Detroit is in the bottom third of fast break points are 8-1 when they win the fast break battle. The Thunder are 10-4 when they win the fast break battle. It’s imperative the Thunder are able to use their defensive prowess to win this battle.

Free throws

Oklahoma City is slowly moving up the rankings, they’re 26th in free throw shooting at 71.6 percent. Oklahoma City has to make free throws if they’re going to win a game, let alone a championship. If they can get over 75 percent, this game is done for. That starts with Russell Westbrook and Steven Adams, the two who’ve been struggling the most. Oklahoma City is shooting over 75 percent in victories. They’re only 64.5 percent in losses.

Bench

The Thunder’s bench has become super consistent but the points are showing it. That’s fine with the injuries the Thunder have experienced but the bench has to produce some points. When the Pistons bench is outscoring their opponents bench, Detroit is 6-1. Oklahoma City is 7-3 when they win the bench battle.

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Nets Meltdown 12.5.18

For those who aren’t aware of what the Meltdowns are: They’re a collection of multiple message boards and website comments from the opponents fan base. I don’t use social media as it’s tough to keep track of the time. Unless it’s just really funny, we tend to avoid those. Message boards are in order and you can see the game change for the opponents as well.

Meltdowns are also a way to show you how not to act as a fan. Rarely anymore, do we see fans say really inappropriate things but they do happen. The NBA is 82 games. Let’s not overreact. Either way, enjoy the Nets fan base meltdown of their 23-point team meltdown!

  • One small step for TANKind
  • One LITTLE leap for Barclays Center!!
  • Nets win!!! Nets win. Nets win? I don’t know, we’ll see.
  • The quest for Zion Williamson starts now.
  • OKC’s defense is too good. it’s gonna be hard to make good passes, they’re very long
  • SMH..grrrr
  • What is happening with the offense that we have Dudley taking step back long 2’s. Just punt the ball into the stands at that point.
  • Offense looking stagnant
  • OKC finally has a weak defender playing in Abrines. I’d keep trying to exploit him, right now with Harris
  • Once again, we are playing to the level of our opponent.
  • We’re up by 6 against a more talented team.
  • lmao diallo has problem with the dimensions of the court
  • how are we winning?
  • why are we winning?
  • Nets are making shots, Thunder kind of playing lazy on offense.
  • I enjoy the 3 person commentary booth
  • Seen way too many double digit leads evaporate with far less time in the game against much worse teams to get comfortable.
  • Jesus, that crowd roar when Westbrook just hit the 3… How the eff are there that many OKC fans in NY, enough to be that loud
  • Brooklyn fan base stinks. Every game they clap harder for the opposition
  • Westbrook is so out of control
  • Read all the whining in this thread when I tuned in during the commercial break…only to find out we’re up 12!?
  • a 20 pt lead feels like a tie game. And a game they will blow in the 4th.
  • We are winning? HOW?
  • Crabbe is hot, OKC is not
  • 16 point lead at the half. So how are they going to blow this one?
  • Game winning Buzzer beater by PG over RHJ Calling it! (this was at 7:45 p.m.)
  • Not falling for It. We coughed up a 7 pt lead in like 10 seconds I’ll watch the condensed game if we win
  • How can Crabbe look so good tonight? After all those crazy airballs he’s been shooting?
  • 20 POINT LEAD!! The kiss of death…
  • 20 point lead?! can’t wait to see us blow it
  • Here come the refs to rescue the thunder
  •  may not watch the 4th Ain’t getting any better than the first 3 quarters And if they blow this, I may never recover
  • Ok guys ..this is how you win the game
  • Thank god Schroeder is not on this team. He has the bbiq of a fifth grader
  • Wow We are winning and yet we still want coaches fired and players traded def during the game.
  • Nets finally getting a few calls
  • They’re definitely losing this game.
  • Need rhj on PG13
  • OKC down only 23 thinking “We got this!”
  • THIS IS B.S.
  • whew!!! For a minute there I thought we might win a game!!!
  • OKC chants in brooklyn, lol, thats nice.
  • Nets should have made it a 40 point lead if they wanted to win
  • We’re playing an away game. What a piss poor fanbase we have.
  • It’s amazing how… Net fans can’t drown out ..the opposing team fans….buncha lackluster fans I tell ya
  • Do we really want to win this game though?
  • Think OKC will take crabbe and Dlo for george?
  • This is pretty remarkable… I don’t think I’ve ever seen this chronic level of choking
  • We were up so many yet if we hold on I feel we got lucky.
  • It’s like we’re setting up a game winner for them.
  • No way they don’t beat us on a game winner right here. I’ve seen this movie before.
  • Rondae on PG13 for the winner First lead in the half…
  • Lmfaooooo
  • Unreal.
  • hahahahahahahaha
  • LOL, hysterical, the guy whos in a zone, lets leave him wide open!!!!
  • How was he open? I don’t even get how that is even possible. PG is the only guy scoring in the 4th.
  • Haha man, I called it!! (He did 9:04 p.m.)
  • just what the doctor ordered
  • hahahahahhahahaha. amazing!!! Really amazing. THis team will not win another game this season!!!
  • We are the WORST team in the league now. Congrats.
  • Where is that Russian owner? Fire this idiot coach.
  • I have passed the stage of anger now…I just laugh as it happens now…these guys really know how to lose
  • It is impossible to watch this anymore…
  • Tbh the reason we lost was cause the Ref Pissed of PG13 on that no call on the and-1 And then he went into beast mode and we have no one close to match that…why you get butler if you could without giving up levert
  • We need to forfeit the rest of the season
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4 Thoughts 12-5-18: (Thunder 114, Nets 112)

1. This is the cool thing about sports. On paper it looks like a mundane Wednesday night game against a bad team in early December. Through three quarters it is entirely forgettable and appears to be a total throw away game. And then….. BOOM! Absolute must watch stuff. Take away everything else and the bottom line is that was fun as hell to watch. The fans in attendance in Brooklyn would seem to agree as it almost sounded like a Thunder home crowd. I couldn’t tell if they were actually CHEERING for the Thunder/George or if they were just audibly reacting to what was happening on the floor. It was cool because it was one of those moments where fandom almost gets suspended and everyone is sort of just in unison watching in awe. That was an all-time epic performance by PG. 25 points in a quarter is silly no matter what quarter in what situation. To do it with your team down 20 and under immense pressure to essentially make every shot is just crazy. My pre-season prediction was that PG would be a sneaky MVP candidate this year. So far I think that is holding up. He’s the best wing defender in the NBA and he is having an excellent year on the offensive end as well. Just a badass night all around. 

2. Much has been made over the years (under Brooks and Donovan) about final inbounds plays during close games. The result has often been a one on one isolation resulting in a less than stellar look. I’m sure many were expecting a dribble-shoot result from Russ tonight. Hopefully the way it went is a sign of further maturity and growth for the team and coaching staff. That was an excellent play. It wasn’t overly complicated, but it was clear they were GOING to get the ball to the guy that was on fire. Russ executed it perfectly. He was patient and drew the D a little bit away from PG before he made the pass. Then credit PG for more patience, allowing the defender to flash by leaving him with a wide open shot for the win. Of course the most impressive part is that he made it. Then, Russ made another excellent play on the defensive end to ice it. Just really beautiful to see the team close out a tight game with team ball on both ends and not simply relying on Russ heroics to get it done. Russ did take one really bad shot during the comeback, but otherwise he recognized the moment and made sure PG was the one with the ball. Russ was going all out on defense and hustling to the glass as well (like he always does). Very, very clear that this team is absolutely buying in and locked in emotionally. Very easy to pack it in down 20 and call it a night.

3. Early in the fourth quarter I decided what I’m about to type would be my #1 Thought for this game. I am really glad it got pushed to #3, but it still has merit. The Thunder took the bait again tonight. The Nets play a very similar style to the Kings. They aren’t as far along or talented as Sacramento, but their approach is the same. They are undersized and undermanned, but they are young and have a lot of energy. They try to offset their physical deficiencies by launching three’s at a crazy rate. If enough of them fall, they will hang around in most games. The only prayer they have to beat an athletically superior team like OKC is to get them to play their game. The Kings did it in both meetings this year leading to two losses for the Thunder. It happened again tonight. Thunder were far too content early in the game to play along with the Nets plan. They weren’t as dedicated to closing on shooters as they should have been and they weren’t attacking the paint as often as they should have been on the offensive end. Just sort of lulled into a shooting contest. The flow was too pretty. Thunder need it to be ugly. For the vast majority of this season the Thunder hate dictated the style of the game. Tonight they did not— until the fourth quarter at least. They got bailed out by an epic individual performance (and the D was awesome down the stretch). But they shouldn’t lose sight that there was a lesson to be learned tonight.

4. In an upcoming blog I want to delve into Chris Fisher, the new play by play voice this season. I wanted to give him awhile before I made any judgments or comparisons. I’ll get into that soon, but tonight I must admit that I thought about Brian Davis and how he would have been having multiple on-air orgasms in the fourth quarter. Gotta admit I would have loved to dial up what I’m sure would have been some memorable calls. I never felt BD was particularly great at his job, but he was definitely fun. And I always enjoyed some banter with friends regarding his calls and catch phrases. With that in mind, I’ll just say the Thunder most definitely created chicken salad out of chicken something else tonight.

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Thunder Game Day #22: at Detroit Pistons

Oklahoma City Thunder (14-7, 5-4 away)

at

Detroit Pistons (13-7, 9-3 home)

Monday, December 3 :: 6:00 p.m. CST :: Little Caesars Arena (20,491)
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-point favorites. The over/under is 219.5.
Online StreamFS OK | WWLS Sports Animal | Live Stats | Twitter | Facebook
Game Notes: Thunder: here | Pistons: here

SETTING THE SCENE

  • The Oklahoma City Thunder take their back-to-back wins on the road for five of the next six games. The Thunder will have their hands full as they start with the Detroit Pistons.
  • Detroit comes into the game with a big win over the Golden State Warriors. The Pistons have won five in a row and are looking to make it six.
  • The Pistons are 2-1 against the Thunder in Detroit over the last three seasons.
  • Oklahoma City beat the Atlanta Hawks 124-109 on Friday, Nov. 30.

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 PISTONS

  • The Detroit Pistons are 13-7 on the season, that’s good enough for fourth in the Eastern Conference.
  • In their last 10 games, the Pistons are 8-2.
  • Only the Toronto Raptors have a better stretch than the Pistons. Detroit has won five in a row.
  • Detroit beat the Golden State Warriors 111-102 on Friday night. It’s the first time Detroit has beaten the Warriors since Dec. 2016.
  • All-time against Detroit, the Thunder are 69-66.
  • Since the 2008-09 season, Oklahoma City is 14-5 against Detroit.
  • The Thunder are 6-3 on the road against Detroit. They’re 1-0 in Little Caesars Arena, a 121-108 victory.
  • Over their last 10 games, the Thunder are 6-4.
  • INJURY REPORT:
    THE DETROIT PISTONS ARE RELATIVELY HEALTHY.
  • The Thunder’s largest margin of victory over Detroit came on Jan. 23, 2012, where Oklahoma City prevailed by a score of 99-79 (20- point margin of victory).
  • Meanwhile, the Thunder’s largest margin of defeat (16 points) vs. Detroit occurred during a 104-88 loss on Nov. 14, 2016.

THUNDER INJURY REPORT

  • Andre Roberson (ruptured patellar tendon) is out.
  • Terrance Ferguson (ankle) is out.

NEXT UP

  • Oklahoma City will travel to Brooklyn on Dec. 5
  • The Thunder will round up the road trip on Dec. 7 at the Chicago Bulls.



Three Keys to the Game

Fast Break points

Oklahoma City needs to turn up the pace against Detroit. Detroit is in the bottom third of fast break points are 8-1 when they win the fast break battle. The Thunder are 10-4 when they win the fast break battle. It’s imperative the Thunder are able to use their defensive prowess to win this battle.

Free throws

Oklahoma City is slowly moving up the rankings, they’re 26th in free throw shooting at 71.6 percent. Oklahoma City has to make free throws if they’re going to win a game, let alone a championship. If they can get over 75 percent, this game is done for. That starts with Russell Westbrook and Steven Adams, the two who’ve been struggling the most. Oklahoma City is shooting over 75 percent in victories. They’re only 64.5 percent in losses.

Bench

The Thunder’s bench has become super consistent but the points are showing it. That’s fine with the injuries the Thunder have experienced but the bench has to produce some points. When the Pistons bench is outscoring their opponents bench, Detroit is 6-1. Oklahoma City is 7-3 when they win the bench battle.

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