Thunder Chase First Road Win at Chase Center

Date: Nov. 25, 2019Tip-Off Time: 9:30 p.m. CTTelevision: Fox Sports OklahomaRadio: 98.1 FM WWLS the Sports Animal and the Thunder Radio Network

Thunder Status After an action-packed stretch against West Coast foes in the Los Angeles Clippers and Lakers, the Thunder returns to the Pacific Coast to take on Golden State for the third out of four meetings this season.

Oklahoma City fell to the Lakers on Friday by three points in the final minutes of play making it the seventh time this season that the Thunder has dropped a game by five points or fewer. Although the final minutes haven’t swung in the Thunder’s favor, Billy Donovan’s team has shared the wealth on the offensive end with rapid ball movement. In its last game against the Lakers, all five Thunder starters finished in double digits as well as sixth-man, Dennis Schröder who finished with 13 points.

With no road wins under its belt, the Thunder will look to garner its first win away from Chesapeake Arena at the Chase Center in San Francisco.

Opponent Breakdown Golden State continues to face injuries as its season progresses. In its last game against the Jazz on Friday, the Warriors played all eight of their available bodies in a 109-113 loss. Playing without Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green and D’Angelo Russell against the Jazz, the Warriors started two rookies in Eric Paschall and Ky Bowman along with resident eight year veteran Alec Burks.

Against the Jazz, it was Burks who lead all Warriors scorers with 20 points. Trailing closely behind was second-year forward Omari Spellman who caught fire behind the arc going 4-4 from the 3-point line and finishing the game with 18 points off the bench.

Matchup Focus

After three straight games facing larger than average lineups, the Thunder now face a much similarly sized Golden State team. Versatile players like 6-foot-10 Danilo Gallinari can take advantage of mismatch opportunities on smaller, 6-foot-6 guards like Burks and Glenn Robinson III. In the previous two meetings with the Warriors, Gallinari tallied 21 points in both games.

“He does a good job of moving away from the ball. He’s obviously got really good size to shoot over people,” said Donovan. “We’ve got to do a good job of recognizing where he’s at and when he is open, if it’s in transition or the half court, we’ve got to be able to find him.”

Stat to Watch 3-point makes. The Thunder rank second in the league in opponent 3-pointers per game holding them on average to 10.1 per contest. In its previous two meetings with the Warriors, the Thunder held them to five and seven makes behind the arc.

In its last game against the Lakers, the Thunder found themselves in a scramble on defense after sending double teams to the likes of Lebron James and Anthony Davis. This led to open 3-point attempts from Laker sharp shooters spotted up on the perimeter. With the Warriors touting a much smaller lineup than the Thunder’s previous opponents, OKC can look to clamp down on 3-point defense and limit the Warrior’s looks.

Thunder Trend The past three games for the Thunder have been decided by five points or fewer. None of the results favoring the Thunder. The close margins are a result of the Thunder continuously fighting back from deficits as large as 15 points.

“We’ve just got to keep getting better and learning from those situations,” said Donovan. “We’re going to go through these experiences, we need to get better from them, we need to learn from them.”