NBA Predictions 2012: Atlanta Hawks vs. Oklahoma City Thunder

Atlanta Hawks at Oklahoma City Thunder
Sunday, 11/4/12, 7:00 PM EST, TV:  FSOK
Opening Point Spread:  Oklahoma City -7.5
Current Betting Line:  Oklahoma City -7.5
Opening Total:  202
Current Total:  202
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

The Atlanta Hawks have had very little success in Oklahoma City

Atlanta opened up its 2012-13 NBA season with a 109-102 setback to the Houston Rockets as five-point home favorites, while going OVER the posted total of 203.  “We’re still trying to establish an identity,” commented Hawks coach Larry Drew.  “That may take a little time to do.”  The Hawks are expecting big things out of Josh Smith this year with Joe Johnson now in Brooklyn, especially since he finished last year averaging career highs with 18.8 points and 9.6 rebounds.  Atlanta is 7-1 ATS on the road in its last eight opportunities.

The Hawks will be making just one trip to Oklahoma City this year, as it looks to snap a two-game road losing streak in this series, while they’ve gone 1-6 ATS in their last seven games in that situation overall.  Atlanta is 13-31 all-time in road openers, but has managed to win two straight and three out of four.  Lou Williams is expected to help provide a lift offensively, as he averaged a career-high 14.9 points with the Philadelphia 76ers last year in finishing second in the league’s Sixth Man of the Year voting.

Oklahoma City evened up its record after two games with an impressive 106-92 win over the Portland Trail Blazers as 8.5-point home favorites, while going UNDER the total for the second time to start the season.  The Thunder were glad to see newcomer Kevin Martin score 19 points last time out, as he looks to take over the scoring load that left with James Harden getting traded to the Houston Rockets.  “You have to have punch coming off the bench,” Martin stated.  Oklahoma City is 16-5 ATS in the last 21 meetings in this series.

The Thunder are going to score points this year with Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook in the fold, as they finished second in the NBA in putting up 103.1 points per game.  Oklahoma City finished behind only Miami and San Antonio in last year’s race for the league’s best home record.  One of the league’s most talented duos combined to score 51.6 points per game last season.

Sports bettors will likely back the Hawks due to their 4-1 ATS mark versus Northwest division foes, while the Thunder are 0-4 ATS versus Southeast opponents.

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