Game 22 Preview: Thunder vs Spurs

In the first meeting of the year, the Thunder burned a 23 points lead in the first half and ended up losing the game 101-104.

Oklahoma City is still a work in progress, but they might come into tonight’s game with a little boost after the important win against the Minnesota Timberwolves. San Antonio will still be without their star Kawhi Leonard. However, his absence didn’t affect too much the Spurs’ season so far. They are currently third in the West and they won eight of the past ten games.

A last minute news reports that also LaMarcus Aldrige, Tony Parker, and Rudy Gay will miss the game against the Thunder.

Keys To The Game

Fast Pace – The Spurs are known to be one of the teams that play at the slowest pace in the league. It will be important for the Thunder to play fast and to run in transition. This doesn’t mean to take shots early in the clock (unless they are good ones), but they should not let the Spurs’ defense settle down.

Defensive Focus – This season, the Thunder are indeed one of the best defensive teams but they always struggle to keep it up throughout a whole game. Lazy defensive stretches cost already a few games included the first meeting against the Spurs. Maintaining the focus all over the game is not an easy task, but it will be vital to the success tonight.

Attack The Paint – The Thunder are ranked 27th in points scored in the paint with an average of 40.2 per game. The team should look to score more in that area and definitely to be more aggressive. The players on the roster have the skills set to do so. This could lead to more free throw attempts per game and possibly create a fouls trouble for the opposite team.

Injury Report

Oklahoma City Thunder

  • N/A

San Antonio Spurs

  • Kawhi Leonard – Quadriceps (Expected to be out until at least Dec. 12)
  • Derrick White – Wrist (Probable)
  • LaMarcus Aldrige – Rest
  • Rudy Gay – Sore right heel
  • Tony Parker – Return from injury managment

Teams Stats

Oklahoma City Thunder

PPG 102.7 – OPP PTS 99.6
FG% 44.0 – 3PT% 34.5 – FT% 74.2
APG 21.1 – RPG 42.6 – TOV 15.1

San Antonio Spurs

PPG 101.5 – OPP PTS 97.5
FG% 45.5 – 3PT% 36.2 – FT% 78.4
APG 23.1 – RPG 44.7– TOV 14.3

Cover Photo by Darren Carroll

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