Utah at Oklahoma City
Time: 8:30 PM CT (NBA TV)
Spread: OKC -3.5
Odds c/o 5dimes
The Utah Jazz lost the series opener against the Oklahoma City Thunder, but since that point, it has been all Utah. The Jazz won Game 2, 3, and 4 by an average of 12.3 points and will look to close out the series on the road in Game 5 at OKC. The Thunder are 3.5-point favorites on its home court, but Jazz rookie Donovan Mitchell has been nearly unstoppable and will look to will the Jazz to a series win on the road.
The over/under is set at 207.5 points, and Games 1 through 4 had point totals of 224, 197, 217, and 209 points— an average of 211.75 points per game. Accordingly based on precedence, we prefer the ‘over.’
Donovan Mitchell has been sensational, as already alluded to. The rookie from Louisville scored 33 points in Game 4 while connecting on 13 of 28 from the field and 3 of 8 from three-point range, while also grabbing seven rebounds, dishing four assists and recording a blocked shot. Mitchell finished +22 for his 39 minutes of court time, and all Jazz starters scored in double-figures. Utah shot 45 percent from the floor and limited itself to just 11 turnovers while recording 21 assists. The Jazz was also plus-3 on the glass, led by Rudy Gobert’s 10 rebounds (four offensive). Utah had 10 offensive rebounds in the game and used a strong third quarter to pull away from OKC, outscoring the Thunder 32-21 in the quarter.
Paul George came through for the Thunder with his most impressive offensive game of the series, but of course, Carmelo Anthony laid a dud in this same game. While George hit 9 of 21 from the floor and all 12 of his free throws, Melo was just 5 of 18 and missed all six of his threes, finishing -18 for his 36 minutes of play with just 11 points and six rebounds.
Russell Westbrook dialed back his shot attempts to feed George, but still scored 23 points and grabbed 14 rebounds, while also dishing three assists. The Thunder had only 10 assists in the game with 14 team turnovers, which is never a good sign— getting more miscues than assists. The Thunder bench also laid collective egg outside of Alex Abrines, as it shot a total of just 7 of 16 from the field. OKC was also just 5 of 26 from three as a team (19 percent), a mark that will not win many games.
Perhaps they get it cooking in their own venue, but three-straight Jazz victories do not bode well for OKC, and we like the Jazz to close it out on the road in something of an upset, led by the outstanding play of “Spida” Mitchell once again, who would be a rookie of the year choice in any other class, but is a tough pick over the outstanding season turned in by Philadelphia’s rookie Ben Simmons.