Game Day Preview: OKC Thunder – Utah Jazz, Game 2

OKC Thunder Paul George (Photo by Zach Beeker/NBAE via Getty Images)
OKC Thunder Paul George (Photo by Zach Beeker/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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OKLAHOMA CITY, OK – APRIL 15: Joe Ingles /

For the playoffs in addition to the three keys, this scribe is introducing the defensive matchups of the game. Using the data provided by Box Score Matchup tool here are tonight’s defensive matchups.

Paul George vs Joe Ingles

Prior to Game 1, it was presumed ‘Playoff P’ would be Donovan Mitchell‘s primary defender. That was not the case as Corey Brewer took Mitchell/ Given the circumstances Brewer did a fine job.

Paul George took Joe Ingles who resembles an insomniac high school teacher rather than a three-point marksman. In the regular season, Ingles was the fifth best wide-open three-point shooter behind Klay Thompson, JJ Redick, Kevin Love, and George.

*Minimum 160 attempts, 69 players qualified.

George did a stellar job on Ingles limiting him to 1-5 (20.0) percent field goal shooting including 0-2 on threes. Ingles scored 13 points in Game 1, but only two came in the 36 possessions Playoff P was guarding him.

Ricky Rubio vs Russell Westbrook

Very few players pester Russell Westbrook on the defensive end. Ricky Rubio deserves praise for the job he did on Westbrook in Game 1. Rubio guarded Westbrook on 48 possessions. Rubio limited Westbrook to 10 of his 29 points. On 4 of 13 on 30.8 percent including 0-3 from the perimeter.

The team scored 50 points while Rubio was guarding Westbrook. Russ did a nice job not getting caught up in a battle with Rubio. He remained poised despite Rubio’s stout defense. Russ must bring the same coolheadedness in Game 2.

Onto the three keys to tonight’s contest.