Oklahoma City Thunder | Game #81: Los Angeles Lakers

Tip-Off: 9:30 PM CT

Location: Crypto.com Arena (Los Angeles, California)

Television: Bally Sports Oklahoma

Radio: WWLS 98.1FM OKC The Sports Animal

Twitter: Follow @ZacharyLowNBA for live-tweets and discussion during the game

The final few days of the regular season is upon, and based on Wednesday night’s 137-101 loss to the Utah Jazz, the Oklahoma City Thunder has figured out how to tank again. That’s a good thing considering that tonight they are taking on the Los Angeles Lakers, who aren’t tanking, but certainly don’t know how to win games right now.

The Lakers have lost more games since the All-Star Break than the Thunder, which is astonishing. OKC has been actively trying to lose games, while LA has been doing everything in their power to get healthy and figure out how to win them so they could make the playoffs. Now that the Lakers have been eliminated from any playoff possibility, it’s hard to see them caring about winning anything, especially if they’re resting their stars to prevent any injury.

Lebron James is in the running for the scoring title, but in order to be considered, he would have to play the final two games of the season, including tonight’s tilt with the Thunder. He very well could end up playing, but he’s just as likely to sit out, as he has the last couple of games for LA.

Regardless of who plays for the Lakers tonight, the Thunder needs to continue their trek towards better odds in the draft lottery, or else this season of tanking might be a waste in a sense.

Projected Starters

Thunder

  • PG: Zavier Simpson
  • SG: Vit Krejci
  • SF: Georgios Kalaitzakis
  • PF: Jaylen Hoard
  • C: Isaiah Roby

Lakers

  • PG: Austin Reaves
  • SG: Malik Monk
  • SF: Talen Horton-Tucker
  • PF: Stanley Johnson
  • C: Dwight Howard

Injuries

Thunder

  • Darius Bazley is OUT (non-displaced tibial plateau fracture).
  • Luguentz Dort is OUT (left shoulder surgery).
  • Derrick Favors is OUT (lower back soreness).
  • Josh Giddey is OUT (right hip soreness).
  • Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is OUT (right ankle soreness).
  • Ty Jerome is OUT (sports hernia surgery).
  • Tre Mann is OUT (strained right hamstring).
  • Mike Muscala is OUT (right ankle surgery).
  • Kenrich Williams is OUT (sprained left knee).

Lakers

  • Anthony Davis is OUT (sprained right mid-foot).
  • Lebron James is OUT (sprained left ankle).
  • Mason Jones is OUT (G League — two-way).
  • Kendrick Nunn is OUT (right knee bone bruise).
  • Russell Westbrook is OUT (right shoulder soreness).

Head-to-Head

  • Since arriving in Oklahoma City in 2008, the Thunder is 26-22 against the Lakers (14-10 at home, 12-12 on the road).
  • Since arriving in Oklahoma City in 2008, the Thunder has won the season series against the Lakers 7 times, lost 5 times, and tied once.
  • The Thunder went 0-3 (0-1 at home, 0-2 on the road) against the Lakers last season.
  • The Thunder is 2-1 (1-1 at home, 1-0 on the road) against the Lakers so far this season.

Game Notes

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