NBA: Portland Trail Blazers at Oklahoma City Thunder Betting Preview

So far so good for the Blazers! They have gotten off to strong starts in each of the first two games of their first-round series with the Thunder and played well in the second half as well. All they need to do is continue to defend the three-point line like they have been and continue hit shots from deep.

Each of the last two years since Kevin Durant left to join the Warriors, the Thunder got bounced in the first round. They acquired Paul George and Carmelo Anthony before last season and would trade Anthony following the season. It is clear now that he was not the problem and was just used as a scapegoat. They could sure use his ability to create a shot right about now.

Oklahoma City is a -7.5 point favorite for this contest, with the over/under set at 221.5 points.

Guards Carrying the Load

When you have Damian Lillard jacking up shots just in front of the logo and hitting them with regularity, you know you’ve got something special. And when CJ McCollum is playing as well as Dame at the same time, the team is just not going to lose.

Enes Kanter had a terrific Game 1 before struggling last time out, but his presence out there does make a difference. Very few teams could lose a center who is as valuable as Jusuf Nurkic and still come out to take a 2-0 lead in their playoff series. Especially considering they had 10 playoff losses in a row coming in.

Portland just has to continue to do what they do. Bury their shots from the outside, defend the wing players of OKC with all their might, and play team basketball. Terry Stotts has done a great job with his team, as he looks to give them the ultimate unofficial clincher in basketball. The 3-0 lead.

Thunder Need Russ To Shine

The keys to winning are relatively simple for the Thunder. They are heavy favorites ahead of tonight’s clash, and if their two stars are able to play like they regularly do, there should be no reason for them to go down. They are going to need Westbrook to get it going from the outset, and he HAS to be able to knock down shots and put points in the board. He should try and score rather than facilitate in the first quarter. Paul George, on the other hand, should be jacking up shots whenever he feels he has a chance to knock them down.

And the role players will have to do their thing. Steven Adams has put up relatively identical stats thus far and is averaging 16.5 points and nine boards. If Jerami Grant and Terrance Ferguson can also knock down their threes, they should be able to claim victory.

OKC picks up the W

Finally on the board! The Thunder are going to win tonight’s game, as Westbrook and George combine for 60 points. Jerami Grant will end his three-point drought, and outside of Dame, they will find themselves able to contain the other Portland weapons.

Free Pick: OKC -7.5

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