NBA Picks: Thunder -6 vs. Suns

Joe Catalano

Thursday, March 6, 2014 1:55 PM GMT

Thursday, Mar. 6, 2014 1:55 PM GMT

Odds maker place great confidence in OKC. They’re a 6 point road favorite and the total for the game is 215.5. Do the Suns have any value as a moneyline in this spot? Take a look at our NBA pick for this Western Conference match-up.

The Western Conference leading Oklahoma City Thunder visit the surprising Phoenix Suns in what should be a fast-paced, high energy basketball game. The Suns have got to be the biggest surprise of the season with the success that they’ve had. Can they knock off the Thunder at home?

Tip-off is scheduled for 9:00 p.m. EST on Thursday at the US Airways Center in Phoenix, Arizona.

Chemistry

This is something that former Sun, Luis Scola, complained about in the past, but can’t be said about this Suns basketball team. Although their defense still allows 102.4 points per game, the Suns can count on guards Goran Dragic (20.2 ppg.) and Gerald Green (15.2 ppg.) to lead the way while they have an assortment of big men in Channing Frye and the Morris Brothers, who’s stock has risen up front. This is a high scoring team that can keep up with one of the best offenses in the league in the Oklahoma City Thunder.

Kevin Durant is going to get his points and Russell Westbrook is seemingly unstoppable, but the Suns must contain the rest of the Oklahoma City basketball team. This is a team that averages 105.4 points per game and allows under 100 points per game; Phoenix has their work cut out for them.

An Injured Dragic

The NBA odds are out, therefore I do expect Goran Dragic to play despite being listed as day to day. Dragic has a left side strain and is listed as probable for this game. A similar circumstance happened with Dragic 3 games ago against New Orleans and he was a gametime decision.  The Yugoslavian sensation proceeded to pound the Pelicans with 40 points. Look for this 20 point per game scorer to be a major factor in this game.

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The Emergence Of the Morris Brothers

These twins have been attached by the hip with Marcus Morris being the better player in college. The tables have turned as Markieff has been the better pro despite both players improving and being serviceable. This is a 1-2 punch that the Thunder will need to give attention to, coming off the bench. Collectively, the Morris Brothers score 23.3 points and 9.8 rebounds per game in just over 23 points per ball game. We might see a lot of “Morris to Morris” in this game.

Best 1-2 Punch in the Game Today

When you have the combination of Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook, you have the two best younger players in the game. Durant, who is scoring 40 points more often, is on his way to a league MVP, while Russell Westbrook is recovering from a knee injury and still managed to get a triple-double in just 20 minutes of play against the pathetic Philadelphia 76’ers. Sprinkle in a little Serge Ibaka and that’s a “Big 3” that can match Miami and Ibaka brings something to the table that the Heat don’t have.

Serge Ibaka is a key component in the Thunder’s quest for the NBA Title. He filled in admirably for Russell Westbrook when Westbrook was out and he’s a major force on the inside that should really give the Suns offense some trouble.

This is a player whose offensive game has gotten significantly better. On the season, Ibaka is averaging 15.1 points, 8.7 rebounds, 2.6 blocks, and is shooting 54.6 % from the field. Any team that plays the Thunder will have their hands full and we see why the Suns are such a large underdog at home.

Outcome

As improved as the Suns are, the Thunder are one of the two best teams in the NBA. Look for OKC to pull away from Phoenix at a crucial time during this game and cover the point spread in your NBA picks.

Pick- Oklahoma City -6 at Bet 365

[gameodds]5/257533/?r-1=43-19-349/us[/gameodds]

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