While the OKC Thunder is currently flying high, tonight’s opponent the Spurs cannot say the same. Gameday breaks down the meeting between the clubs.
In the last ten games, the OKC Thunder are 8-2, with losses to the Boston Celtics and Dallas Mavericks. The latter, when Chris Paul sat out. They are sitting sixth in the standings and within reach of the fourth spot. However, the Thunder’s big man rotation has taken a little hit with Darius Bazley out for 4-6 weeks with a bone bruise on his knee.
The San Antonio Spurs, on the other hand, have struggled the majority of the season. They are 2-8 in their last ten games and in danger of missing the playoffs. They are sitting in tenth, and five games back from the eighth spot in the West.
However, there are several truths in the NBA and the first among these is never count out a Gregg Popovich coached team. Since he took over as the head man, the Spurs have never missed the playoffs.
Another truth is that LaMarcus Aldridge loves playing the OKC Thunder. His style of game is the hardest for the OKC Thunder defense to guard. The Thunder were able to contain Aldridge and the rest of the Spurs last time around at the AT&T Center.
As the season has progressed the Thunder has become more comfortable with each other on the court and is one of the toughest teams to play in the NBA. Their strong team ethos on defense is matched by their team oriented offense.
Five OKC Thunder players are averaging double digits in scoring. So if you stop Shai Gilgeous-Alexander then Chris Paul or Dennis Schroder will get you from the guard brigade. Likewise in the big men department, if you can contain Danilo Gallinari then Steven Adams will get you. This makes the Thunder so hard to defend.