It’s the season opener for a pair of NBA teams on Thursday Night. The New York Knicks will head out on the road and take on the Oklahoma City Thunder. This is the first game of the season, but it’s also the first game for former Knicks star Carmelo Anthony against his former team. The Knicks are coming off a season a year ago that saw them finish 31-51.
The Oklahoma City Thunder went to the postseason, but were downed by Houston last year. The Thunder finished the regular season with 47 wins. This season, with the addition of Carmelo Anthony and Paul George, it appears Oklahoma City is one of the contenders to take out the Golden State Warriors in the Western Conference.
Thunder Looking to Be Elite
The Oklahoma City Thunder have the Most Valuable Player from a season ago. Russell Westbrook scored more than 31 points pre game, and also ripped down more than 10 rebounds per game, and dished out 10+ assists. The Thunder will join Westbrook with Paul George and Carmelo Anthony, both leading scorers from their teams a season ago.
With them will be Andre Roberson and Steven Adams. The Thunder added shooting guard Terrance Ferguson in the draft, and that was it. Oklahoma City finished as the top rebounding team in all of the National Basketball Association a season ago with 46.6 per game.
Knicks Seeking Upset Early
The New York Knicks would love to pull a road upset to start the season. The problem with the Knicks is they likely do not have enough talent to do that. The Knicks are projected to start Frank Ntilikina at point guard, Courtney Lee at shooting guard, Tim Hardaway Jr, Kristaps Porzingis and Willy Hernangomez. The bench starts with Doug McDermott and Ron Baker for the Knicks.
Porzingis will certainly get his fair share of the basketball. A season ago, alongside Carmelo Anthony, the power forward scored 18.1 points per game, and ripped down 7 rebounds. In his career, he is scoring 16.1 points per game, and averaging 7.3 rebounds per game. The Knicks lost all five preseason games.
Thunder Win Big
The Oklahoma City Thunder are going to win this game big. This is a national televised game, but it’s hard to imagine that the New York Knicks have enough firepower to keep up in this game. The Knicks may be able to stay competitive early in this game, but the Thunder are going to run away with the win here.
Russell Westbrook is going to be a pain in the butt for the Thunder. Even if they are able to guard him – the Thunder have two other guys that can go crazy offensively. The bet in this game is definitely on the home favorite. Take the Oklahoma City Thunder -12 over the New York Knicks on Thursday Night.
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