The NBA took a number of different steps this offseason to adjust the schedule to be better-suited for keeping players healthy and allowing more rest. Along with eliminating playing four games in five days completely, the league also reduced the number of back-to-back games for teams.
After playing 15 games with no rest days last season, that number has been reduced to 11 this season for the Thunder. In those 15 games, the Thunder went 5-10, which is a 33.3% win percentage. In all other games, Oklahoma City won 62.6% of their games.
On top of the lowered win percentage, the Thunder also shot lower in back-to-back games than in any other game that involved at least one day of rest. With zero days rest, Oklahoma City shot 42.6% from the field and 31.7% from three compared to 45.7% from the field and 32.9% from three with at least a day of rest.
With the reduction in back-to-backs, the Thunder should expect to see some immediate benefit with the extra rest as a result. It doesn’t hurt that the Thunder improved their depth, which means more guys are capable of stepping up and allowing rest for starters when possible.
Article written by Zack Low. Follow @TheThunderGuys on Twitter and Instagram.