Tip-Off: 7 PM CT
Location: Chesapeake Energy Arena (Oklahoma City, Oklahoma)
Television: Bally Sports Oklahoma
Radio: WWLS 98.1FM OKC The Sports Animal
Twitter: Follow @ZacharyLowNBA for live-tweets and discussion during the game
The Oklahoma City Thunder is riding a season-long 4-game losing streak, and no one should be surprised. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander has missed the last 8 games, Luguentz Dort has been out for the last 6, and Darius Bazley hasn’t played since March 4th. Al Horford won’t play another minute this season, and likely won’t ever again for the Thunder. The roster is pretty thin right now, and the guys that are actually available to play are especially lacking in experience.
Tonight, the Thunder hosts the Cleveland Cavaliers, another one of the league’s young teams. As youthful as Cleveland is, they have plenty of budding star talent—Collin Sexton and Darius Garland, namely—and that alone should be enough for them to get an easy win in OKC. Add Kevin Love, a seasoned veteran with a championship ring on his resumé, and it’s almost a for sure thing.
Don’t count out a desperate team, though. Organizationally speaking, it appears the Thunder has no interest in winning games to finish out the 2020-21 campaign, but young guys fighting for contracts don’t know what it means to give up. Théo Maledon and Aleksej Pokuševski are making history as rookie teammates who have picked up a chunk of the scoring burden lately, so despite the compiled losses, it’s interesting to see what the duo is going to do on any given night.
- PG: Théo Maledon
- SG: Svi Mykhailiuk
- SF: Kenrich Williams
- PF: Aleksej Pokuševski
- C: Moses Brown
- PG: Collin Sexton
- SG: Darius Garland
- SF: Isaac Okoro
- PF: Dean Wade
- C: Kevin Love
- Darius Bazley is OUT (left shoulder contusion).
- Luguentz Dort is OUT (concussion protocol).
- Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is OUT (plantar fascitis in right foot).
- Josh Hall is OUT (concussion protocol).
- Darius Miller is QUESTIONABLE (strained left groin).
- Mike Muscala is OUT (sprained right ankle).
- Isaiah Roby is OUT (concussion protocol).
- Jarrett Allen is OUT (concussion).
- Larry Nance Jr. is OUT (illness).
- Dylan Windler is OUT (sore left knee).
- Since arriving in Oklahoma City in 2008, the Thunder is 12-12 against the Cavs (6-6 at home, 6-6 on the road).
- Since arriving in Oklahoma City in 2008, the Thunder has won the season series against the Cavs 3 times, lost 4 times, and tied 5 times.
- The Thunder won the season series with the Cavs 2-0 a year ago (1-0 at home, 1-0 on the road).
- The Thunder has won 7 of the last 8 games against the Cavs, including the last 2 at Chesapeake Energy Arena.