OKLAHOMA CITY THUNDER (14-4)
at BROOKLYN NETS (11-5)
Tip-off: Tuesday, 7:35 p.m. ET
Line: Oklahoma City -3.5, Total: 191.5
The sizzling-hot Thunder seek their sixth straight win (SU and ATS) when they visit a Nets team riding a six-game home win streak on Tuesday night.
Oklahoma City is 8-1 (SU and ATS) in its past nine games, scoring at least 100 points in all nine contests. The Thunder have made at least 51% FG in six of these games, including each of the past four contests. Brooklyn has not reached 100 points in any of its past nine games, but it has still won 10 of its past 13 games, going 9-3-1 ATS. This includes a perfect 6-0 mark (4-1-1 ATS) at Barclays Center. The big injury news in this game is that the Nets' top scorer, C Brook Lopez (foot), and top rebounder, PF Reggie Evans (flu) are both expected to sit out on Tuesday.
Can the Thunder extend their long winning streak on Tuesday? For the answer, connect to NBA Best Bets for all the Expert picks throughout the entire 2012-13 season. The experts continue to stay sizzling on NBA Best Bets since Nov. 26, going a collective 32-16 ATS (67%) with StatFox Gary going 7-1 ATS. For NBA Totals, StatFox Scott is 33-13 (73%) on NBA Totals for the season, while Gary is a tremendous 12-1 in Totals since Nov. 24, and is 59% (19-13-1) on totals this season. For Best Bets, the experts are a collective 105-88-8 ATS (54.4%) this year. StatFox Gary leads the way at 67% ATS (18-9-2) Best Bets for the year, as he's currently on a 13-4 ATS (76%) run since Nov. 17. StatFox Scott's 10-4 ATS run puts him at 60% ATS (27-18) Best Bets for the season, while StatFox Brian's 7-4 ATS surge puts him at 53% ATS (27-24-3) for the year.
The Thunder lead the NBA with 105.1 PPG, and their 49% FG ranks second in the league behind Miami. SF Kevin Durant (26.2 PPG, 8.7 RPG, 4.3 APG) continues to put up huge numbers across the board with 27.4 PPG on 56% FG (42% threes) during the five-game win streak. He has the same 27.4 PPG scoring average during his team's six-game series win streak over the Nets, hitting 53% FG and pulling down 7.8 RPG. Although PG Russell Westbrook (20.7 PPG, 8.7 APG, 5.1 RPG) has shot just 39% FG (20-of-51) with 18 turnovers in the past three games, he's still averaging 19.4 PPG, 9.4 APG and 3.4 SPG during the win streak. And like Durant, Westbrook has also played a big role in the recent dominance over Brooklyn, posting 19.3 PPG, 7.7 APG and 6.0 RPG in the six head-to-head victories. PF Serge Ibaka has been a block machine in the past three games with 15 swats, but his offense this season has been more surprising with career highs in points (14.3 PPG) and shooting (59% FG). Sixth man SG Kevin Martin (16.1 PPG) has been on fire with his new team, hitting 48% of his threes and starting SG Thabo Sefolosha (7.1 PPG) is making 45% of his long-range shots, giving Oklahoma City a 42% 3-pt FG for the season (2nd in NBA).
Without the services of Lopez (18.5 PPG, 6.8 RPG) and Evans (8.4 RPG), the Nets will need a huge game from their backcourt of Joe Johnson and Deron Williams to compensate. These players average 15.6 PPG and 15.4 PPG, respectively, but Johnson is shooting 41% FG while Williams is even worse at 38% FG (27% threes). He is a big reason why the Nets make just 33.5% of their threes (24th in NBA), but Williams does have 24.0 PPG in his past six games versus Oklahoma City. SF Gerald Wallace has been cold this season (43% FG, 33% threes), but the ejection (fighting) in Boston has fired him up the past two games where he has 16.5 PPG on 60% FG (6-of-12 threes). PF Kris Humphries (8.1 PPG, 8.1 RPG) will also have to put the ball in the bucket more frequently, as he's just 9-for-23 (39%) in his past three games. C Andray Blatche will try to fill Lopez' void with a performance similar to his 20 points and eight boards in Saturday's loss at Miami.