Oklahoma City Thunder (43-30, 25-11 home)
Miami Heat (39-33, 17-20 away)
Friday, March 23 :: 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 enemy: Here.
Line: The Oklahoma City Thunder are a 6½-point favorite. The over/under is 215½.
Online Stream: FS OK | WWLS Sports Animal | Live Stats | Twitter | Facebook
Game Notes: Thunder: here | HEAT: here
SETTING THE SCENE
- With their winning streak broken, the Oklahoma City Thunder will look to get back into their winning ways as they host the Miami Heat tonight at the Peake.
- Boston stunned the Thunder on Tuesday night. Miami survived a double overtime thriller against the Denver Nuggets.
- The Miami-Thunder series has been super tight because of the LeBron James era. Without James, the Thunder are 5-1 against Miami since the King returned to Cleveland. That includes three straight at home vs. Miami.
- This is Oklahoma City’s fourth straight game against a team that’s .500 or better. They have six more remaining after tonight.
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).
SCOUTING THE HEAT
- The Miami Heat are 39-33 on the season, seventh in the Eastern Conference.
- The Heat have won three straight and are 7-3 in their last 10 games.
- In their last game, Miami beat the pants off the Knicks 119-98 on Wednesday night.
- In the all-time series, Oklahoma City is 36-22 against Miami.
- Since the Thunder relocated from Seattle, Oklahoma City is only 10-8.
- When the games are played at the Peake, the Thunder are 5-4. That includes three straight wins.
- The Miami-Thunder series has been super tight because of the LeBron James era. Without James, the Thunder are 5-1 against Miami since the King returned to Cleveland.
- Last season Oklahoma City swept the Heat 2-0. The Thunder won both games by an average of 13.0 points per game.
- INJURY REPORT:
Hassan Whiteside (hip) is out.
Dwayne Wade (hamstring) is out.
Dion Waiters (ankle) is out.
- The Thunder’s largest margin of victory over Miami is 25 points which occurred during last season’s 99-74 victory on Jan. 17, 2016.
- Meanwhile, the Thunder’s largest margin of defeat (22 points) vs. Miami occurred during an 103-81 loss on Feb. 20, 2014.
THUNDER INJURY REPORT
- Andre Roberson (ruptured patellar tendon) is out for the season.
- Oklahoma City host the Portland Trail Blazers in a pivotal game on Sunday evening.
- Then, Oklahoma City goes to San Antonio on Tuesday night.
WHAT’S IN A HOT NAME
- In October 1986, the owners of Miami’s expansion franchise selected Stephanie Freed’s Heat submission from more than 20,000 entries.
- Those also included Sharks, Tornadoes, Beaches, and Barracudas.
Three Keys to the Game
The Heat are one of the best teams in the NBA in defending transition points. Oklahoma City might be one of the best in the league at getting out on the break, especially since the all-star break, but they’ll have to attack Miami tonight. The Heat aren’t the slowest team since the all-star break. The Thunder have to put the Heat on their heels and take this game.
While the Thunder bench is only 13-10 when the out score their opponents, they’re even better when the bench is shooting efficiently. Oklahoma City is 17-5 when the bench shoots better than their opponent. Not necessarily out scoring, but more efficient.
Oklahoma City has to win the rebounding battle tonight. The Thunder are 32-10 when they have the same or more rebounds as their opponents. They’re a fun 11-20 when they lose the rebounding battle. Miami is 23-15 when they win the rebounding battle. If Oklahoma City can rebound, they’ll run away with this.We invite you to follow Thunder Digest on Twitter and like Thunder Digest on Facebook. Our Podcast is on iTunes. We also have a Thunder Digest Instagram account if you love fun Thunder photography!