OKC Thunder: Schroder takes charge in victory over Cavs, 3 takeaways

OKC Thunder Dennis Schroder (Photo by Zach Beeker/NBAE via Getty Images)
OKC Thunder Dennis Schroder (Photo by Zach Beeker/NBAE via Getty Images) /

The OKC Thunder defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers to move up to sixth place in the West which was led by a Schroder masterclass. Here are three takeaways.

The OKC Thunder displayed a team effort to beat the Cavaliers in a close encounter. There were notable individual performances from Dennis Schroder and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, continuing a trend this season.

Despite the Cavs sitting in the last spot in the East, their ability to keep the game a close contest looked promising. They repaired their third quarter struggles and came out much stronger outscoring the Thunder 28-23 during that period.

This game had major implications for both teams going forward. As the Atlanta Hawks defeated the Minnesota Timberwolves, it meant that they went up to 14th and the Cavs went down to 15th.

OKC was rewarded for their consistency and was pushed up to the sixth spot after their win over the Cavs. This gives them a greater chance of making the playoffs and as expected more eyes were on them, as Schroder and Danilo Gallinari garner interest from teams around the league.

That takes us to three takeaways from the win.

Dennis Schroder is unstoppable:

You could say that Schroder is the most wanted player on the OKC Thunder. He led both teams in scoring with 30 points, six assists, five rebounds, a steal, and a block.

It was his seventh consecutive match with at least 20 or more points off the bench. He came up big in the clutch, displaying the great influence Chris Paul has had on him in those moments.

There’s no surprise why other teams want him on their side. Schroder’s developed tremendous confidence and greater decision making this season which has allowed him to flourish. He’s also accepted his role and will only get better.

It doesn’t matter what’s happening around him, he showed that he’s locked in and is all about helping the team. Whether he is moved or remains in OKC, he’s an awesome talent who would contribute immensely wherever he goes. Thunder Nation just hopes that only continues in the blue and white.

Chris Paul joins the 1000 club:

Paul played in NBA game 1000 and it truly came full circle as he made his debut in OKC in 2007. To be playing in his 15th season and still be performing at a high level is impressive.

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He finished the match with 12 points, seven assists, three rebounds and a steal in 30 minutes of play. The All-Star is visibly enjoying his basketball and is averaging 17.1 points, 6.6 assists and 5.1 rebounds per game.

Paul is also achieving all of this while playing the second-lowest number of minutes in his career (31.6).

OKC Thunder playing like it’s their last game:

The OKC Thunder have played most of the games this season like it’s their last one. Not because it was or is but because they have the drive to be successful.

They want to play to the best of their ability but as many discussed this game might’ve been their last with the same roster.

No matter what happens they can be glad that they put everything on the line. The improvements from everyone comes as a result of team chemistry. Trusting each other every night and that is something to be proud of.

As the Thunder played through a busy day of trade talks and blocked out all the noise, it showed that for them it’s about focusing on the task at hand and letting all the things they can’t control figure itself out.

Next. 5 key questions facing Thunder at trade deadline. dark

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