Oklahoma City backup point guard Dennis Schröder is about to make his third start of the season. All three were somewhat unexpected as Russell Westbrook started the season recovering from a minor knee operation and is now sidelined with an ankle sprain.
Dennis Schroder should get plenty of opportunities tonight with Russ out. The ankle injury looked worse initially but Westbrook is still out of the lineup tonight. Schroder has only started 2 games this year but has done a good job giving the Thunder another scorer. #ThunderUp pic.twitter.com/XqHjAkMqD5
— Connor Learn (@ConnorLearnNBA) November 7, 2018
OKC is 0-2 in Schröder’s first two starts but tonight is destined to be different…mostly because Cleveland is terrible. The 1-9 Cavs are among the worst in the league against the guard positions which sets Schröder up for potentially having the best night of his career in a Thunder uniform.
“I have a great comfort level with Dennis,” OKC head coach Billy Donovan of Schröder filling the void. “He’s a terrific player and he’s been a great addition to our team. He’s a great guy, he’s cerebrally smart, he’s got a good feel for the game.”
Averaging 15.4 points and 5.6 assists per game, Schröder is facing a Cleveland team that is allowing 25 points and 8.77 rebounds per game to the position. When Schröder slides over to the #2 guard, with Raymond Felton running the point, the opportunity remains a plus. The Cavs are giving up 22 points, 6 rebounds, and 5 assists per game to the shooting guard position.
With Westbrook on the sideline all eyes will be on Schröder tonight and the scene is set for him to put on a show in The House that LeBron Left.
“The mindset is still going to be the same as next game even if he misses or makes the shots,” Steven Adams said of Schröder. “His mindset is still the same. Same for the rest of us, it’s still the same it’s just that he made some shots which is good.”