The Oklahoma City Thunder look to save their season when they visit the Portland Trail Blazers in Game 5 of their best-of-seven playoff series on Tuesday night.
Tuesday, April 23 at 10:30 PM ET
Russell Westbrook played well in Game 3, dropping 33 points but he was inefficient again in Game 4, scoring just 14 points on 5 of 21 shooting and 2 of 7 from 3-point range (28.5 percent) in the 111-98 loss. The Thunder have limited offensive options so they need their stars to play well every night and only Paul George did that on Sunday, scoring 32 points, despite going 8-for-21 from the field.
Damian Lillard had 24 points, shooting 4-for-8 from downtown while CJ McCollum led the Trail Blazers with 27 points and his baskets down the stretch kept the Thunder from coming back. McCollum was 10-for-20 from the field and 5-for-9 from 3-point range (55.6 percent).
Lillard and McCollum have been unstoppable in this series, putting the Trail Blazers on their back while the Thunder basically have to rely on Westbrook and George to have big games every night in order to keep up. Dennis Schroder has given the Thunder some offense off the bench and Jerami Grant and Terrance Ferguson have tried to provide 3-point shooting but they're not accurate enough to be considered a consistent offensive threat.
The Oklahoma City Thunder are:
5-16 ATS in their last 21 games against Western Conference opponents
1-4 ATS in their last five games following a double-digit loss at home
1-4 ATS in their last five road games
1-4 ATS in their last five road games against a team with a winning home record
1-5 ATS in their last six games against Northwest Division opponents
2-6 ATS in the last eight meetings in Portland
The Portland Trail Blazers are:
25-9 ATS in their last 34 games when their opponent allows 100 points or more in their previous game
21-8 ATS in their last 29 games playing with one day of rest
34-15-3 ATS in their last 52 games following a straight up win of more than 10 points
43-21-1 ATS in their last 65 home games
This might not be what is happening but is worth considering that when the Thunder was rolling mid-season many believed they were the biggest threat to the Warriors with a healthy Paul George playing at an MVP level, even with Russell Westbrook struggling with his shot. Things haven't been same since George injured his shoulder and a healthy PG12 might've been a difference-maker.
OKC will go as far as George and Westbrook will take them and they haven't taken them far in this series. The Thunder haven't won a road playoff game since Kevin Durant left (11 straight games) and I just don't see how that will change tonight.
NBA Pick: Trail Blazers -4 (-110) at Jazz Sports
Check odds here: http://bit.ly/jazzonaff