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Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Atlanta Hawks: 2010-2011 Game 34 Preview; The Highlight Factory Remains the Buffer Between Contenders and Pretenders in the East

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This also counts as an open thread, so feel free to post your thoughts during the game here.

Records: The Oklahoma City Thunder (22-11) vs. The Atlanta Hawks (21-13)

Time: 7:00 PM Central Standard Time

Place: The Ford Center, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

TV: Fox Sports Oklahoma, Sports South

Radio: WWLS The Sports Animal (98.1), 99X 97.9 FM

Enemy Blog(s): Peachtree Hoops, Hoopinion

Previous Meeting(s): None.

The Hawks, over the past couple of years, have epitomized a statement made by Jerry Sloan. "There's nothing worse than having a 40 win team." Though the Hawks aren't a 40 win team, they've had essentially the same roster for the past three years, and they've basically been known as "that team in the East that's pretty good but isn't going to be a championship threat anytime soon". Sure, getting to the playoffs every year is nice, but if you're pre-destined to be cannon fodder for the best teams in the east every year, how great is being in that position?

Okay, maybe I'm getting a bit too philosophical here. The Hawks are a solid team that could very well beat us his year. Joe Johnson always has huge games against us, and their starters generally shoot well. But, the Thunder should be able to pull this one off. The Hawks aren't great at stopping our role players, leading to Sefolosha and Krstic getting big nights. If anything, the Thunder should focus on team play and avoiding throwing Durant into double teams when he's cold. All in all, this should be an eventful win. We are facing The Highlight Factory, after all.

Prediction: Oklahoma City 112, Atlanta 107

Irrelevant Note: Be on the lookout for former Thunder players Etan Thomas and Damien Wilkins!