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Thunder vs. Magic preview: Thunder Mode against Magic Paint

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The Collision of Explosive Teams!

Don't blink.
Don't blink.
William Bennett Berry

Where They At: Oklahoma City Thunder

Hey, a healthy OKC’s season debut was not bad! Russell Westbrook picked up where he has left last and led the Thunder to beat the San Antonio Spurs! Have you noticed how bumped up he was after the victory? He definitely looks to continue his hot streak. Kevin Durant finally took the court after about 18 months. Although Kawhi Leonard did a great job locking him down, Durant looks 100 percent healthy with gusty moves. And that is what matters most. Westbrook called Durant the best after the win. It’s about time for Durant to back his buddy up.

Judging from the first game, everyone’s role has not changed much in Billy Donovan’s system. But taking down Gregg Popovich’s squad should inject plenty of confidence Donovan’s unit. One thing though – OKC had 19 turnovers throughout the game. Turnovers have a long history plaguing OKC and could stand between the team and their title-pursuit.

Where They At: Orlando Magic

A late non-goaltending call denied the Magic’s winning attempt against the Washington Wizards. Unfortunate as the result was, the Magic almost shocked their opponent with a 9-0 run in the final quarter. They will look to atone for the regret when they host the Thunder.

The Magic has stocked enough talent, rookie Mario Hezonja being the latest addition. The 20-year-old Croatian pulled off a heroic debut highlighted by a go-ahead three-pointer late in the fourth quarter. Sophomore Elfrid Payton maturely weaved Magic’s offensive thread and third-year Victor Oladipo seemed ready to lead the team this season. The newly-hired coach Scott Skiles is trying to turn the Magic around with what he got.

The Matchup

The Dynamic duo and Oladipo may all put on a show with their athleticism. Chances are that there also will be plenty of turnovers. Orlando finished their first game one mistake less than the upcoming Thunder.

The determining factor, however, may come from the inside. Serge Ibaka can get good looks once Durant and Westbrook turn on attack mode, but he needs to knock them down. Nikola Vucevic, on the other hand, can make some serious noise in Thunder's paint.

Prediction: Thunder 107 Magic 93

20116 NBA Season Game 2
(Won 1)

(Lost 1)
October 30th, 2015
The Amway Center, Orlando, Florida
6 PM Central Daylight Time
TV: Fox Sports Network Oklahoma, Sun Sports
Injury Report: None
Last Season's Matchups: Jan 19 (W 127-99), Feb 2 (W 104-97)
Probable Starters
Russell Westbrook PG Elfrid Payton
Andre Roberson SG Victor Oladipo
Kevin Durant SF Evan Fournier
Serge Ibaka PF Tobias Harris
Steven Adams C Nikola Vucevic