Two teams from the West will face off tonight at Chesapeake Energy Center, Oklahoma for their second time this season, with Oklahoma winning the first match-up (103:95).
Oklahoma City Thunder will be hoping to repeat their success against Grizzlies with another win, which happened on 12th of January. But it might not be that easy as it was. Yes, the match is played in Oklahoma as it was a month ago, but Thunder are currently suffering from a bad form. In the past 5 matches, they have won 2, with their last 3 being losses. Cavaliers (107:91), SA Spurs (108:94) and Bulls (100:128) all defeated Thunder, who seemed to got back on track with 3 consecutive wins prior to this terrible run. The game against Bulls was nothing less than disappointing. Thunder came into that match as a favourites but were defeated by 28 points. A loss by a single digit would be reasonable but 28 points is a different story. However, the match started slow, with 1 point lead by Bulls by the end of 1st 12 minutes. Next 3 quarters were sadly not the same. Bulls managed to get a 8 point lead prior to 2nd half (47:55), which only increased in following half (26:39), (27:34). Shooting performance from Thunder in 3rd quarter was disappointing (33.3%), whereas Bulls shot twice as good (75%). Actually, there was not a quarter, where Thunder had a higher shooting accuracy compared to Bulls, which of course resulted in their defeat. Sadly enough the poor shooting was not a 1 match thing. In all of their last 3 games, Thunder were not able to score more than 38% of their shots, which is really worrying to say the least. All in all, Thunder shot 38% from the field, with 9 turnovers and 6 steals. On the other side, Bulls shot with 60.5% accuracy, with 9 turnovers and 9 steals. Top scorers; Westbrook (28pts), Butler (28pts) and Wade (18pts).
Today’s guests are Memphis Grizzlies, who are having a completely different experience in the past games. Grizzlies are currently on a 3 game winning streak, with only 1 defeat in the past 5 games. In the course of those 5 games, Grizzlies won against Raptors (101:99), Jazz (95:102), Suns (96:115) and Nuggets (99:119), whereas they failed to do the same against Trail Blazers (112:109). In the last game against Denver Nuggets, Memphis established their dominance in the 1st quarter, with a 9 point lead, which only increased with each following quarter. Denver were unable to catch up with heated Grizzlies and their loss was inevitable. Throughout the 48 minutes, Grizzlies shot with 48.9% accuracy, accumulated 8 turnovers and had 6 steals. Nuggets shot worse, with 40% accuracy, committed more turnovers (17) and had more steals (7) compared to Grizzlies. Top scorers: Gasol (24pts), Conley (18pts) and Gallinari (14pts); (Arthur, Randolph, Mudiay and Carter all with 14 points).
Verdict & Prediction
On one hand we have got a team that is unable to score and on the other side a team that has been performing really good in recent matches. The odds are close due to the last match between those two resulting in a win for Thunder and due to the fact Thunder had tougher opponents leading to this match. Despite all that morale does play a big part in teams performance and Grizzlies surely have an advantage in that aspect. In addition, Thunder will be playing without Kanter and Abrines being still under a question after a back injury. For me Grizzlies are a better team in tonight’s match.
Prediction: Memphis Grizzlies -1.0 points
Odds: 1.90 SBOBET