OKC Thunder host Blazers to complete season series : preview

OKC Thunder Steven Adams, Lugentz Dort and Dennis Schroder (Photo by Sam Forencich/NBAE via Getty Images)
OKC Thunder Steven Adams, Lugentz Dort and Dennis Schroder (Photo by Sam Forencich/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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OKC Thunder
OKC Thunder (Photo by Jeff Haynes/NBAE via Getty Images) /

Nuts and bolts

Projected line-ups

OKC Thunder Starters:

There are a number of directions Billy Donovan can take in terms of the starting lineup based on both their own injuries and the Blazers injuries. The easy decision is Nerlens Noel will fill in if Adams can’t go.

The more complicated choice is if Terrance Ferguson can’t go again depending on what happens with the Blazers backcourt. McCollum’s sprain appeared severe enough that he’ll likely miss this game but Lillard played Friday in spite of his illness. Donovan could start Dennis Schroder and go with the three guard lineup or he insert Darius Bazley or Hamido Diallo and go with more size.

Point Guard: Chris Paul
Shooting Guard: Shai Gilgeous-Alexander
Small Forward: *Terrance Ferguson
Power Forward: Danilo Gallinari
Center:  *Steven Adams (Nerlens Noel will get the start if Adams is out)

OKC Thunder Bench:

Point Guard: Dennis Schroder.
Shooting Guard: Deonte BurtonLuguentz Dort
Small Forward: *Abdel Nader
Power Forward: Mike MuscalaDarius Bazley
Center: Nerlens NoelJustin Patton

Injury notes:

  • *Terrance Ferguson exited the Heat match due to illness and is questionable for Saturday.
  • *Steven Adams (knee contusion) is questionable.
  • *Abdel Nader (ankle) missed the Heat match and is questionable for Saturday.
  • Andre Roberson is still listed as out rehabbing his knee away from the team.

Portland Trail Blazers Starters:

Like the Thunder, there is uncertainty about the starting rotation of the Blazers, particularly in the backcourt. My guess is McCollum will be out and Lillard will push through his illness because his backcourt partner won’t be able to go.

Point Guard: *Damian Lillard
Shooting Guard: Gary Trent Jr. (assuming McCollum can’t go)
Small Forward: Kent Bazemore
Power Forward: Carmelo Anthony
Center:  Hassan Whiteside

Portland Trail Blazers Bench:

More from Thunderous Intentions

Point Guard:
Shooting Guard: Anfernee Simons
Small Forward: Mario HezonjaJaylen Hoard (two-way)
Power Forward:  Anthony TolliverNassir Little

 Injury notes:

  • *Damian Lillard is day to day with an upper-respiratory illness
  • *CJ McCollum sprained his ankle Friday versus the Mavericks and is day to day
  • Rodney Hood is out for the season with an Achilles injury
  • Zach Collins is out for an extended time with his shoulder dislocation.
  • Jusuf Nurkic is still out due to the compound leg fracture suffered last season.
  • Skal Labissiere is out for at least four more weeks with a knee injury

* All injury data sourced through basketball reference

Game specifics:

The Venue: Chesapeake Energy Arena

Tipoff:  9:00 PM ET  | 8:00 PM CT

TV: FS Oklahoma

Radio: WWLS 98.1 FM OKC


The teams have played 47 times as they are named today with the Blazers holding the slight advantage with 24 wins

Next. Where National NBA pundits grade Thunder at halfway mark. dark

Enjoy the game and make sure to check back after the game for the game recap and takeaways.