Tonight Fox is airing the OKC Thunder first win of 2019-20 which occurred versus the Warriors.
Continuing the series of top OKC Thunder games this season Fox Sports Oklahoma is airing the team’s first win from this season. It was the third match played by OKC and the opponent was their nemesis the Golden State Warriors. The replay airs at 6:00 p.m.
The Thunder won the match via a thorough thumping of the Dubs 120-92. A notable factor was Stephen Curry hadn’t yet suffered his injury and while Golden State was missing Klay Thompson they did have Draymond Green and D’Angelo Russell in the starting lineup.
One irony in the match is the Thunder turned over the ball 24 times compared to 15 for the Dubs, yet it was OKC who took advantage outscoring Golden State 26 to 19 on those gaffes.
As Thunderous Intentions has done throughout the series we’re serving up the three keys to focus on from the victory.
Three keys to OKC Thunder win vs. Warriors:
First signs of what was to come:
Although the Thunder didn’t need to get to clutch time for the win this match offered an early hint of what was to come this season.
Five players scored in double-figures including all of the starters except Steven Adams who came close with eight but delivered 10 rebounds and only needed to play 25:24. In fact, no one played 30 minutes given the rout.
Thunder avoided typical bad habits:
As we noted throughout the season OKC had two very bad habits – – getting out to slow starts and not performing well in third quarters.
While the club did allow the Warriors their best frame in the third quarter they still won that frame. More importantly, they jumped on the Dubs in the initial frame, winning it 35 to 20. They didn’t take their foot off the pedal in the second again winning the frame handily (35-17). The only quarter the Thunder lost was the fourth (15-24).
In fairness, by this point in the game, none of the starters were on the hardwood. While the bench improved over the course of the 64 games this was also one of the few times everyone on the floor was a reserve player. And, even in this game, Dennis Schroder played under 3:30 in the frame, so it truly was the end of the bench playing.
This game offered encouraging signs that Terrance Ferguson had merited Billy Donovan’s commitment to starting him and was prepared to take a step.
After playing great defensively in the first two games of the season, TFerg broke out offensively.
Against the Jazz, he was noted for taking no field goal attempts but scored two points at the charity stripe. He followed this up with four field goal attempts versus Wizards but was held scoreless.
In this contest, he scored 13 points on 5 of 7 from the field including 3 of 4 from deep. In addition, he led the squad with a plus +30 differential and had a complete-game effort with four assists and two rebounds.
The forward also covered Stephen Curry for the majority of the match holding him to 23 points and a miserable night from deep (2 of 9).
The early optimism however was premature as this was one of seven times he scored in double-digits.