National Basketball Association
Oklahoma City at Golden State
When: 10:30 PM ET, Wednesday, January 18, 2017
Where: Oracle Arena, Oakland, California
When the Golden State Warriors put everything together, they look positively unbeatable. The Oklahoma City Thunder, who visit Golden State on Wednesday, already saw that type of performance once from the Warriors and will try to disrupt the rhythm with star Russell Westbrook going up against former teammate Kevin Durant.
Durant, who made waves that rippled throughout the league when he left Oklahoma City over the summer to sign with Golden State, is thriving in his new home. The former MVP was seduced by the Warriors' ball movement and unselfishness and is averaging a team-high 25.8 points on a career-high 53.7 percent shooting as part of a team that leads the NBA in scoring (117.7 points) and assists (31.3) after handing out 37 assists and shooting 50.5 percent from the field in a 126-91 drubbing of the defending-champion Cleveland Cavaliers on Monday. Westbrook became the undisputed leader of the Thunder with Durant's departure and is putting up historic stat lines but not quite as many wins. Oklahoma City is in the midst of a six-game road trip and fell hard on the second night of a back-to-back with a 120-98 setback at the Los Angeles Clippers on Monday.TV:
10:30 p.m. ET, ESPN, FSN Oklahoma, CSN Bay Area (Golden State)ABOUT THE THUNDER (25-18):
Westbrook, who is averaging a triple-double, was held to 24 points, five rebounds and four assists against the Clippers to snap a string of three straight double-doubles as Oklahoma City struggled on both ends of the floor. "We had a hard time generating baskets," Oklahoma City coach Billy Donovan told reporters. "We certainly didn’t make enough shots. Defensively we had made some strides over the last five to seven games, but it wasn’t one of our better defensive games." Westbrook and the Thunder had a similarly poor performance the first time they visited Golden State on Nov. 3, when Westbrook went 4-of-15 from the floor and the Warriors breezed to a 122-96 win.ABOUT THE WARRIORS (35-6):
Durant blasted his former teammates en route to 39 points in 31 minutes in that Nov. 3 meeting and is a perfect fit for Golden State on both ends of the floor, with his length and ability to challenge shots a key to the team defense. Durant (three) and Draymond Green (five) combined for eight blocks in Monday's win, and Durant turned in the defensive play of the night by stuffing LeBron James on a drive to the basket. The Warriors are up to four straight on their latest winning streak and are finishing up a four-game homestand with Oklahoma City before a stretch of seven of nine on the road.BUZZER BEATERS
1. Thunder C Steven Adams (concussion) sat out Monday's game and is in the league's protocol.
2. Warriors SG Klay Thompson is averaging 24.5 points and is 9-of-16 from 3-point range in two games since resting last week against Miami.
3. Golden State took the last four in the series, beginning with Game 5 of the Western Conference finals last spring.PREDICTION:
Warriors 122, Thunder 109
Stats and Records