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4/27/2013 3:51:00 PM
How will Kevin Durant and the Thunder respond to the devastating loss of Russell Westbrook? Check out our Game 3 pick inside.
Oklahoma City opened up as a three-point favorite, but when
news of Westbrook's injury broke, that number was quickly down to one. The
spread has even reached a PK at some NBA betting sites.
Perhaps you'd be better off focusing on a total play for
Game 3. The O/U has also seen its fair share of movement, heading from an
opening number of 211.5 all the way down to 207, which was the number at time
Oklahoma City Thunder
Westbrook has undergone surgery for a torn meniscus and will
be out indefinitely, severely hurting Oklahoma City's title aspirations.
The durable point guard was presumably hurt on a play when
Patrick Beverley lunged for a steal and caught Westbrook. Though a questionable
decision, it was hardly a dirty move from Beverley. Don't tell that to
The former UCLA star stayed in regardless and finished with
29 points, five rebounds, four assists, and four steals in just over 37 minutes
of OKC's 105-102 win. Kevin Durant had a 29/9/4 line, while Serge Ibaka came up
with 12 points, 11 boards, and six blocks.
Obviously Durant has to step up his game even more so now,
with the supporting cast also needing to elevate their play.
Reggie Jackson should pick up a bulk of Westbrook's minutes,
while Kevin Martin and Derek Fisher will get plenty of run as well. As it turns
out, adding Fisher to the roster late in the season has turned out to be a
Check out our NBA odds page to stay live on the lines!~
The Rockets showcased their battling spirit in Game 2
despite falling just short. They never backed down and made a big run in the
second half to make Thunder fans a little uneasy.
Kevin McHale opted to move Beverley into the starting lineup
in place of Greg Smith, hoping that the smaller and more athletic lineup would
give Oklahoma City some issues. The move paid off, as Beverley exploded for 16
points, 12 rebounds, and six assists, with his energy really lifting Houston
As for James Harden, he was his usual brilliant self. He
ended up with 36 points, 11 rebounds and six dimes. He was 17-of-20 from the
free throw line, but was a little too careless (six turnovers) in the loss.
Though unable to steal away a game in OKC, the Rockets had
to be encouraged by the fight they brought on the road.
We know Harden is always going to get his points, but
Houston needs the likes of Chandler Parsons, Omer Asik, Jeremy Lin, and Carlos
Delfino to be aggressive on the offensive end as well. If they rise to the
occasion, the Rockets are going to be mighty tough to beat.
Check out the Clippers vs. Grizzlies~
Game 3 Pick
This is a very dangerous spot for Houston. Yes, Westbrook is
out and that's a blow, but who knows how the Thunder will respond here.
Disperse Westbrook's plethora of shots to the likes of
Durant and Martin and you're going to have yourself a more efficient team on
the offensive end. Durant has come out and said that he knows he can lead this
team and here is his first chance to back that statement up.
A vast portion of the public is going to side with Houston
to get the job done in a must-win situation, but we are going with Oklahoma
City to defy the odds. This is still a terrific basketball team regardless of
the injury and we think we'll see others step up to fill the void.
Pick: Oklahoma City Thunder PK at BET365