|2012-2013 NBA Season|
|March 11th, 2012|
|The American Telephone and Telegraph Center, San Antonio, Texas|
|7:30 PM CDT|
|National Basketball Association Television, Fox Sports Network Oklahoma, Fox Sports Network Southwest|
|WWLS the Sports Animal (98.1), WOAI 1200 AM|
|Pounding The Rock, Project Spurs, 48 Minutes of Hell|
|Previous Meetings: Nov. 1st, Dec 17th (Season Series Tied at 1-1)|
|Injury Report: Tony Parker (Out)|
|Russell Westbrook||PG||Cory Joseph|
|Thabo Sefolosha||SG||Danny Green|
|Kevin Durant||SF||Kawhi Leonard|
|Serge Ibaka||PF||Tim Duncan|
|Kendrick Perkins||C||Tiago Splitter|
Remember that team we faced on Sunday? You know, those fellows in green uniforms who managed to survive entirely without a point guard? Well, the Spurs are pretty much those same guys. Despite the loss of Tony Parker and the total lack of a legitimate PG option on the roster, they've managed to continue their winning ways. Granted, they just endured a ridiculous loss against Portland, but that was a rare defensive breakdown that had nothing to do with TP.
After the thrilling Conference Finals, the Thunder have split the season series with the Spurs, and generally looked like the superior team. In the first game, Tony Parker was able to hit a game-winning shot courtesy of a massive Russell Westbrook defensive error, but the Thunder were able to dominate them at home in the second game. The Spurs were without Leonard and Ginobili, but the Thunder were able to get the Spurs to foul, which almost never happens. Then again, the blowout did come when the Thunder were on an exceptional roll.
The absence of Parker in tonight's game should open new doors for Russell Westbrook, who really struggled with Parker's quickness. The Spurs replacement, Cory Joseph, is seeing his first NBA minutes and shouldn't be a real force on either end, allowing Westbrook to contribute normally. And if Westbrook can shoot reasonable percentages, there's no reason to think the Spurs can win this game.
In the end, this is definitely a loseable game. Every Spur has had some measure of success against Oklahoma City in the past, and even without Parker, this is a great passing team that will find their guys on the perimeter. Plus, they're well rested and playing at home. Bu Parker was such a huge advantage defensively that I find it hard seeing the Spurs beating the Thunder under normal circumstances, so I think that the Thunder will win here.
Prediction: Oklahoma City Thunder 109, San Antonio Spurs 103.
If you are looking for tickets to upcoming games, you can find Oklahoma City Thunder tickets here.