The jockeying for position in the Western Conference continues in yet another interesting clash. The Oklahoma City lead the season series, 2-1.
Catch the game tomorrow at 9:00 AM, Manila time.
HOME: Utah Jazz (36-43, 22-17 HOME)
Projected starting five:
- Talen Horton-Tucker
- Jordan Clarkson (out) / Ochai Agabji
- Luka Samanic
- Lauri Markkanen (day-to-day) / Udoka Azubuike
- Walker Kessler (out) / Kelly Olynyk
The Jazz have faltered down the stretch. By playing incomplete on most nights, especially recently, they have dropped seven of their last eight games. They are drawing dead for a play-in berth, with Jordan Clarkson, Lauri Markkanen, and Walker Kessler all potentially out for tomorrow as well. Note that Markkanen played two days ago and he’s day-to-day,
Two guards from the second unit have taken the mantle following the absences: Talen Horton-Tucker, who’s posting 20.9 points, 5.3 rebounds, and 6.6 assists per game in his last 14 outings, and rookie Ochai Agbaji, who has 14.7 PPG over his last nine. Starting big man Kelly Olynyk, meanwhile, has 14.0 points, 6.7 boards, and 1.3 blocks on 55% shooting in the season series with OKC.
Utah is scoring 116.5 PPG in its current 1-7 stretch with a -7.8 net rating, so it’s not pleasing. However, since it’s mostly the second unit’s young core, it’s a bit of a wildcard every game. Also, they have won four in a row ATS.
AWAY: Oklahoma City Thunder (38-42, 15-25 AWAY)
Projected starting five:
- Josh Giddey
- Shai Gilgeous-Alexander
- Jalen Williams
- Lu Dort
- Jaylin Williams
The Thunder are in a world of pressure. They currently have the last play-in spot, but the no. 11 Dallas Mavericks are breathing down their necks and also own the tiebreaker against them. OKC is only 2-5 in its last seven games and on a three-game skid.
All-Star Shai Gilgeous-Alexander will simply have to will his squad to a victory. He has the tools to do so, and we’re about to find out how equipped he really is. He’s boasting 31.5 PPG in the regular season, which ranks fifth in the league, and 38.5 PPG in the season series (2 games).
SGA isn’t alone too, of course. Josh Giddey and top Rookie of the Year Candidate Jalen Williams will be right there with him. Both are averaging 20-plus PPG in against the Jazz this season. With all that firepower, the Thunder have lit up the Jazz defense for 126.0 PPG in the three previous meetings, and we’ll likely see that again tomorrow.
As a complete opposite of the Jazz’s good ATS trend as of late, the Thunder are 0-8 ATS in their last eight outings.
Handicap: The Thunder (-5.5) fail to cover the spread.Over/Under: The total hits the over (232.5)