NBA Western Conference Finals Game Six: Golden State Warriors at Oklahoma City Thunder

2016 NBA Playoffs
Western Conference Finals – Game #6
#1 Golden State Warriors at #3 Oklahoma City Thunder
Thunder Lead Best of Seven Series 3-2
Saturday, May 28, 2016, 9:05 pm Eastern, TV: TNT
Chesapeake Energy Arena – Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Opening Line: Golden State -1 1/2
Current Line: Oklahoma City -2 1/2
Opening Total: 221
Current Total: 220
Opening Money Line: Thunder -135 / Warriors +115
Current Money Line: Thunder -145 / Warriors +125

Kevin Durant and the Thunder look to close out the Warriors in game six of the Western Conference Finals.

Kevin Durant and the Thunder look to close out the Warriors in game six of the Western Conference Finals.

The defending champion Golden State Warriors did what they had to do to stay alive with a game five victory Thursday night at home against the Oklahoma City Thunder in the Western Conference Finals. However, they still trail the series 3-2 and now comes the hard part. The Warriors must win on the road in OKC to force a game seven Monday night in Oakland. The Thunder destroyed the Warriors by a combined 52 points in games three and four in Oklahoma City. A Thunder win in game six would send them back to the NBA Finals for the first time since 2012 where the Eastern Conference Champion Cleveland Cavaliers await.

Oklahoma City stole home court with a 108-102 victory in game one. Golden State rebounded in game two with a 118-91 victory. No one, not even the most hard core Thunder fans, could have predicted what would happen next. Oklahoma City completely dominated in all phases of the game in the two games in OKC. The Thunder won game three 133-105, and led by as many as 41 points. Game four was almost as bad. The Thunder won 118-94 to take a commanding 3-1 lead in the series. The series returned to Oakland for game five and the Warriors won 120-111.

The Warriors were 7 point favorites in game five and the total was 219.5. Golden State took a 25-21 lead in the first quarter and led by 8 at halftime. The Thunder pulled to within six by the end of the third. Golden State expanded the lead to 13 midway through the fourth, but the Thunder fought back to within 5 points.

In fact, with less than a minute left Kevin Durant missed a three pointer that would have made it a one possession game. The Warriors made their free throws to not only stay alive but cover the spread as well. The Warriors won the rebounding battle 54 to 50 and also attempted 10 more free throws than the Thunder, 34 to 24. After two subpar performances, Steph Curry played up to his two time MVP level with 31 points, 7 rebounds, 6 assists and 5 steals. Klay Thompson had 27 points. Draymond Green had 11 points, 13 rebounds, 4 assists and 4 blocks. Durant had 40 points, 7 rebounds and 4 assists. Russell Westbrook had 31 points, 8 assists, 7 rebounds and 5 steals. However, the Thunder got virtually no help from the supporting cast.

Golden State is coached by Steve Kerr. Kerr won the NBA coach of the year award despite missing almost half the season recovering from back surgery. The Warriors set an NBA record for wins in the regular season with a 73-9 record. They won the Pacific Division by 20 games over the Los Angeles Clippers. The Warriors beat the Houston Rockets in five games in the first round. The Warriors then beat the Portland Trail Blazers in five games in the second round. Two time MVP Stephen Curry suffered knee and ankle injuries in the first round against the Rockets and missed six games in the playoffs. He returned for the last two games against the Blazers. Golden State is the defending NBA Champion. Golden State is 54-41-2 ATS and the total is 52-44-1.

Oklahoma City is coached by Billy Donovan. Oklahoma City is 55-27 and won the Northwest Division by 11 games over the Portland Trail Blazers and were the #3 seed in the West. OKC is 47-50-3 ATS and the total is 46-52 this season. The Thunder beat the Dallas Mavericks in five games in the first round. All four Thunder wins in the series were by double digits. After getting crushed by the Spurs in game one by 32 points, OKC won four of the next five games to win the series in six. The Thunder are in the Conference Finals for the third time in the last six seasons, after missing the playoffs last year.

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Golden State is outscoring teams 114-103 in the playoffs. The Warriors are shooting 48% from the field and 40.7% from three point range. Golden State makes 74.3% of their free throws. Opponents are shooting 40.6% from the field and 35.4% from three point range. The Warriors average 45.6 rebounds per game and opponents average 45.6 as well. Golden State averages 27.1 assists, 13.5 turnovers, 8 steals and 6.4 blocks per game. Opponents average 19.9 assists, 16 turnovers, 7.6 steals and 4.3 blocks per game.

Klay Thompson averages 27.2 points, 3.6 rebounds, 2.9 assists and 1.2 steals per game in the playoffs. Curry averages 24.8 points, 5.3 rebounds, 6.5 assists and 1.3 blocks per game. Draymond Green averages 17.7 points, 10.4 rebounds, 7 assists, 1.6 steals and 2.3 blocks per game. Shaun Livingston averages 11.1 points, 3.4 rebounds and 4.6 assists per game. Harrison Barnes, Andre Igoudala, Marreese Speights, Leandro Barbosa, Andrew Bogut and Ian Clark will also get minutes in the rotation. Kevon Looney is out for the season with a hip injury.

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Oklahoma City is outscoring teams 106-98 in the playoffs. The Thunder are #3 in scoring in the playoffs. OKC is shooting 46.9% from the field and 33.9% from three point range. Oklahoma City makes 79.7% of their free throws. Opponents are shooting 44.9% from the field and 34.1% from three point range. OKC averages 46.2 rebounds per game and opponents average 36.5 per game. Oklahoma City averages 20.2 assists, 13.9 turnovers, 6.9 steals and 4.9 blocks per game. Opponents average 20.9 assists, 10.9 turnovers, 5.7 steals and 3.5 blocks per game.

Kevin Durant averages 27.4 points, 6.5 rebounds, and 3.6 assists during the playoffs. Russell Westbrook averages 25.5 points, 6.8 rebounds, 10.8 assists and 1.8 steals per game. He had 18 triple doubles this season to tie Magic Johnson in 1981-82 for the most in the last last 40 seasons. Center Enes Kanter averages 11.6 points and 7.3 rebounds per game. Forward Serge Ibaka averages 11.7 points, 5.3 rebounds, 1 steal, and 1.4 blocks per game. Steven Adams averages 10.2 points and 9.9 rebounds per game. Dion Waiters averages 9.4 points, 2.5 rebounds, 2 assists and 1 steal per game. Randy Foye, Cameron Payne, Anthony Morrow, Nick Collison, and Andre Roberson will also get minutes in the rotation.

Golden State is 5-2 ATS on one day rest, 1-4 after scoring 100 points or more, 1-5-1 in Saturday games, and 0-4 after a straight up win. The over is 7-2 in OKC in this series recently.

Oklahoma City is 4-0 ATS at home, and against teams with winning road records, 6-1 after failing to cover, 12-3-1 after a straight up loss, 4-1 after allowing 100 points or more, 6-2 against teams with winning records, overall and against Western Conference teams, 24-9-2 in Thursday games, 18-7-1 after the opponent scores 100 points or more,  and 5-2 on one day rest. The home team is 15-5-1 ATS in this series recently. The Thunder are 5-0-1 ATS at home against the Warriors.

The fact that the Thunder hung tough against a desperate 73 win team who had only lost three times at home bodes well for their chances to close out the series at home. Both teams need to treat this like an elimination game. I think the Thunder get it done at home but it won’t be as easy as the other games in Oklahoma City.

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Posted by on May 28 2016. Filed under Headlines, NBA. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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