When: 7:00 PM ET, Friday, April 6, 2012
Where: Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Indianapolis, Indiana
The Opening Line is : Oklahoma City Thunder -3.5 Click here to Bet at Bovada
PREVIEW: The Oklahoma City Thunder haven’t lost three consecutive games all season. The Thunder visit the Indiana Pacers on Friday in a bid to halt a two-game losing skid and maintain their edge over the San Antonio Spurs for top spot in the Western Conference. Oklahoma City’s lead is just one game after losing to the Miami Heat on Wednesday. The Pacers have won three straight games and have the third-best record in the Eastern Conference.
TV: 7 p.m. ET, Fox Sports Oklahoma, Fox Sports Indiana
Oklahoma City Thunder (40-14): Guard Russell Westbrook averaged 32 points in two games against Indiana last season after totaling just 35 points in his first four career games against the Pacers. Westbrook had 43 points in the first of two meetings in 2010-11. He poured in scored 28 points in the loss to Miami but was a porous 9-of-26 from the field. He also shot poorly (5 of 16) two nights earlier in the loss to the Memphis Grizzlies. Westbrook is fifth in the NBA in scoring at 24.4 per game. Forward Kevin Durant is second at 27.6.
Indiana Pacers (33-21): Indiana has been sailing along and now faces back-to-back pivotal games against Oklahoma City and Boston. The positive news is that both games are at home, where the Pacers are 17-7. “Back-to-back games are less about rest, but more lack of preparation,” Indiana coach Frank Vogel said. “Oklahoma City may be the best team in the NBA, right up there with Miami and Chicago. We’re looking forward to using that as a barometer to see where we’re at. It’s a big challenge.” The Pacers shot a season-best 57.9 percent while beating the Washington Wizards on Wednesday.
1. This is the only meeting of the season between the teams – the Thunder swept last season’s two meetings.
2. Oklahoma City committed 20 turnovers in the loss to Miami.
3. Indiana PG Darren Collison had 17 points and 11 assists against Washington for his third double-double of the campaign.
PREDICTION: Thunder 102, Pacers 97. CLICK HERE for 500 Handicappers Package FOR 5$.
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